|00:00:00||AS I USE FOR A MOMENT HERE.|
|00:00:04||LET ME SAY, FIRST OF ALL, AGAIN, I APPRECIATE THIS AMENDMENT.|
|00:00:11||THERE IS NOT A LOT OF CONTENTION ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF ADDRESSING NUCLEAR SHORT-RANGE WEAPONS, TACTICAL WEAPONS, AS WE CALL THEM, AND, I MEAN, THE ADMINISTRATION WANTS TO DO THIS AS MUCH AS OUR FRIENDS DO ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE AISLE AND I THINK THE SENATOR FROM IDAHO KNOWS THAT.|
|00:00:32||LET ME JUST CORRECT ONE FACT FOR A MINUTE THAT BOTH THE SENATOR FROM TEXAS AND THE SENATOR FROM IDAHO SAID.|
|00:00:39||THEY SAID THAT THE RUSSIANS WILL NOT HAVE TO REDUCE THEIR STRATEGIC WARHEADS HERE AND THAT THEY'RE ALREADY BELOW THE NUMBER OF 1,550.|
|00:00:49||THAT IS NOT ACCURATE.|
|00:00:50||AND I WON'T GO INTO DETAIL HERE.|
|00:00:52||WE CAN REINFORCE THIS TOMORROW IN A CLASSIFIED SESSION, BUT THE RUSSIANS DO HAVE TO REDUCE WARHEADS UNDER THIS REQUIREMENT, NOT AS MUCH AS US, BUT OUR DEFENSE COMMUNITY HAS MADE THE JUDGMENT THAT BECAUSE OF OUR TRIAD, WHICH WILL REMAIN ROBUST, AND FOR OTHER REASONS, WE HAVE A VERY SIGNIFICANT ADVANTAGE HERE.|
|00:01:17||AGAIN, I'LL DISCUSS THAT TOMORROW IN THE CLASSIFIED BRIEFING.|
|00:01:20||WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO SAY TO MY COLLEAGUE HERE IS THAT, AGAIN, I AM 100% PREPARED TO TRY TO EMBRACE THIS CONCEPT EVEN FURTHER IN THE RESOLUTION OF RATIFICATION BUT WE CANNOT DO IT IN A WAY THAT REQUIRES THIS TREATY TO GO BACK AND BE RENEGOTIATED.|
|00:01:42||AND THERE'S A SIMPLE, REALLY SIMPLE -- THIS IS NOT A COMPLICATED AMENDMENT -- THERE'S A VERY SIMPLE REASON WHY WE SHOULD OPPOSE THIS AMENDMENT AS IT IS NOW, BECAUSE OF THE REQUIREMENT THAT WE GO BACK.|
|00:01:55||BECAUSE IF WE DON'T PASS THE START TREATY, IF WE CAN'T REACH A BILATERAL AGREEMENT ON THE AGREEMENT ON THE REDUCTION OF STRATEGIC WEAPONS, THERE WILL BE NO DISCUSSION ABOUT TACTICAL WEAPONS.|
|00:02:11||THAT'S AS PLAIN AS DAY.|
|00:02:13||EVERY NEGOTIATOR, EVERYBODY WHO'S BEEN PART OF THIS PROCESS UNDERSTANDS THAT.|
|00:02:18||IF WE CAN'T SHOW OUR GOOD FAITH TO REDUCE AND CREATE A MUTUAL VERIFICATION SYSTEM FOR STRATEGIC WEAPONS, HOW ARE YOU GOING TO SIT IN FRONT OF THEM AND SAY OH, BY THE WAY, LET'S GET YOU TO REDUCE WHAT IS YOUR ADVANTAGE?|
|00:02:33||IT IS AN ADVANTAGE, I ACKNOWLEDGE IT.|
|00:02:34||YOU GO AHEAD AND REDUCE IT.|
|00:02:35||THEY'RE GOING TO LAUGH AT US AND WE WILL HAVE LOST ALL THE VERIFICATION THAT WE HAVE TODAY.|
|00:02:41||NOW, IT'S NOT JUST ME THAT SAYS THAT.|
|00:02:44||THE FACT IS THAT, YOU KNOW, SECRETARY GATES HAS BEEN VERY, VERY CLEAR ABOUT THIS AND SECRETARY CLINTON LIKEWISE.|
|00:02:58||SECRETARY GATES SAID THIS.|
|00:03:00||LET ME QUOTE HIM.|
|00:03:01||I KNOW YOU ALL RESPECT HIM ENORMOUSLY.|
|00:03:05||QUOTE -- "WE WILL NEVER GET TO THAT STEP OF REDUCTIONS WITH THE RUSSIANS ON TACTICAL NUKES IF THIS TREATY ON STRATEGIC NUCLEAR WEAPONS IS NOT RATIFIED.|
|00:03:15||" IT'S A PRETTY SIMPLE EQUATION, FOLKS.|
|00:03:17||THIS ISN'T A ONE-WAY STREET, WHERE WE CAN STAND HERE AND SAY, YOU GOT TO DO THIS AND YOU GOT TO DO THAT, AND, BY THE WAY, WE DON'T CARE WHAT YOU THINK ABOUT WHAT WE'RE DOING, WE'RE GOING TO DO WHAT WE WANT.|
|00:03:28||THAT'S NOT NOT THE WAY IT WORKS.|
|00:03:31||THERE'S GOT TO BE SOME RECIPROCITY IN THE PROCESS OF REDUCTION AND VERIFICATION AND INSPECTION AND SO FORTH.|
|00:03:36||THEY'VE GOT THINGS WE DON'T WANT THEM TO SEE.|
|00:03:39||-- THEY DON'T WANT US TO SEE.|
|00:03:40||WE'VE GOT STUFF WE DON'T WANT THEM TO SEE.|
|00:03:42||THERE'S PLENTY IN THIS AGREEMENT THAT WE PROTECT OUR FACILITIES FROM THEM BEING ABLE TO INTRUDE ON THEM EXCESSIVELY, BECAUSE OUR FOLKS DON'T WANT THEM TO.|
|00:03:50||THAT'S THE NATURE OF A CONTENTIOUS RELATIONSHIP, WHICH IS THE REASON YOU HAVE TO ARGUE OUT, NEGOTIATE OUT A TREATY IN THE FIRST PLACE.|
|00:04:00||NOW, IF THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE IS TELLING US, A SECRETARY OF DEFENSE, BY THE WAY, THAT WE ALL MUTUALLY RESPECT ENORMOUSLY BUT WHO WAS APPOINTED TO THE JOB BY PRESIDENT BUSH, IF HE'S TELLING US, YOU'VE GOT TO PASS THIS IN ORDER TO GET TO THE TACTICAL NUKES, I THINK WE'VE GOT TO LISTEN TO THAT A LITTLE BIT.|
|00:04:23||NOW, LET ME JUST POINT OUT, I WANT THE RECORD TO REFLECT I AGREE WITH THE SENATOR FROM IDAHO, THEY HAVE AN ADVANTAGE -- THEY HAVE MANY MORE TACTICAL NUKES.|
|00:04:34||THEY HAVE FOR A LONG TIME.|
|00:04:35||AND THE REASON IS, THEY HAVE DIFFERENT STRATEGIC NEEDS.|
|00:04:40||THEY'RE IN A DIFFERENT PART OF THE WORLD.|
|00:04:43||FOR A LONG TIME, THE WARSAW PACT AND NATO WERE HEAD-TO-HEAD SQUARED OFF AND SO THEY SAW A WORLD IN WHICH THEY SAW THE POTENTIAL OF A LAND INVASION.|
|00:04:56||AND SO FOR A LONG TIME, THEY HAD TANKS AND MINES AND OTHER THINGS THAT WERE NUCLEAR CAPABLE.|
|00:05:05||NOW, WHAT HAPPENED IS WE, UNILATERALLY, I MIGHT ADD, DECIDED UNDER PRESIDENT BUSH, I THINK IT WAS, PRESIDENT GEORGE HERBERT WALKER BUSH, WE DECIDED THIS IS DANGEROUS, THIS DOESN'T MAKE SENSE, DOESN'T MAKE SENSE FOR US.|
|00:05:21||SO WE UNILATERALLY ANNOUNCED AFTER THE FALL OF THE SOVIET UNION, PRESIDENT BUSH ANNOUNCED THAT WE WERE GOING TO RATCHET DOWN OUR TACTICAL NUCLEAR FORCES FORCES.|
|00:05:32||AND EVERYBODY AGREED WITH THAT.|
|00:05:34||IT MADE SENSE.|
|00:05:35||SO WHEN WE -- WE DID THAT AND WHAT HAPPENED IS, AFTER THAT, PRESIDENT BORIS YELTSIN IN 1992 PLEDGED THAT THE PRODUCTION OF WARHEADS FOR GROUND-LAUNCHED TACTICAL MISSILES, ARTILLERY SHELLS AND MINES HAD STOPPED.|
|00:05:56||THEY STOPPED IT BECAUSE WE STOPPED IT.|
|00:05:58||AND ALL OF THOSE WARHEADS WOULD BE ELIMINATED.|
|00:06:01||HE PLEDGED THAT RUSSIA WOULD DISPOSE OF ONE-HALF OF ITS TACTICAL AIRBORNE AND SURFACE-TO-AIR WARHEADS AS WELL AS ONE-THIRD OF ITS TACTICAL NAVAL WARHEADS.|
|00:06:12||THE RUSSIAN DEFENSE MINISTRY SAID IN 2007 THAT GROUND-FORCE TACTICAL NUCLEAR WARHEADS HAD BEEN ELIMINATED.|
|00:06:21||AIR DEFENSE TACTICAL WARHEADS WERE REDUCED BY 60%.|
|00:06:25||AIR FORCE TACTICAL WARHEADS WERE REDUCED BY 50%.|
|00:06:29||NAVAL TACTICAL WARHEADS WERE REDUCED BY 30%.|
|00:06:35||THAT DIDN'T HAPPEN WITH A TREATY.|
|00:06:37||IT HAPPENED BECAUSE OF WHAT WERE CALLED PRESIDENTIAL NUCLEAR INITIATIVES.|
|00:06:40||OUR PRESIDENT MADE THE DECISION, PRESIDENT BUSH, WE DIDN'T NEED THEM, DANGEROUS, REDUCE THEM.|
|00:06:47||THE RUSSIANS FOLLOWED.|
|00:06:51||NOW, WE ESTIMATE -- I HEARD AN ESTIMATE EARLIER OF 2,000-SOMETHING, 3,000 -- THIS IS ACCORDING TO "THE BULLETIN OF ATOMIC SCIENTISTS.|
|00:07:00||" YOU KNOW, WE ESTIMATE THEY HAVE A LARGE INVENTORY OF OPERATIONAL NONSTRATEGIC WARHEADS, 5,390 IS THE NUMBER HERE, TACTICAL WARHEADS, AIR DEFENSE TACTICAL, ET CETERA.|
|00:07:12||SO THEY STILL DO HAVE MORE.|
|00:07:13||AND IT STILL IS A VERY LEGITIMATE CONCERN TO US.|
|00:07:19||THAT IS WHY -- THAT IS WHY, MY COLLEAGUES, IN THE RESOLUTION OF ADVICE AND CONSENT, WE HAVE THE FOLLOWING DECLARATION: THE SENATE CALLS UPON THE PRESIDENT TO PURSUE, FOLLOWING CONSULTATION WITH ALLIES, AN AGREEMENT WITH THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION THAT WOULD ADDRESS THE DISPARITY BETWEEN THE TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS STOCKPILES OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION AND OF THE UNITED STATES AND WOULD SECURE AND REDUCE TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN A VERIFIABLE MANNER.|
|00:07:51||THAT'S ONE THING WE SAY THAT'S TACTICAL.|
|00:07:55||THAT'S IN THE RESOLUTION.|
|00:07:56||YOU CAN VOTE FOR THAT.|
|00:07:58||IN ADDITION WE SAY, RECOGNIZING THE DIFFICULTY THE UNITED STATES HAS FACED IN ASCERTAINING WITH CONFIDENCE THE NUMBER OF TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS MAINTAINED BY THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION, THE SENATE URGES THE PRESIDENT TO ENGAGE THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION WITH THE OBJECTS OF, ONE, ESTABLISHING COOPERATIVE MEASURES TO GIVE EACH PARTY TO THE NEW START TREATY IMPROVED CONFIDENCE REGARDING THE ACCURATE ACCOUNTING AND SECURITY OF TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS MAINTAINED BY THE OTHER PARED, AND, TWO, PROVIDING THE UNITED STATES OR OTHER INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE TO HELP THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION ENSURE THE ACCURATE ACCOUNTING AND SECURITY OF ALL OF ITS TACTICAL AND NUCLEAR WEAPONS.|
|00:08:41||SO, MR. PRESIDENT, I'M PREPARED, IF THAT LANGUAGE DOESN'T SATISFY FOLKS, LET'S GO A LITTLE FURTHER.|
|00:08:47||I'M HAPPY TO DO THAT.|
|00:08:48||BUT WE'RE NOT GOING TO DO IT IN A WAY THAT PRECLUDES US FROM GOING TO THE VERY NEGOTIATIONS THAT YOU WANT TO HAVE IT JUST DOESN'T MAKE SENSE.|
|00:08:58||NOT TO MENTION THE FACT THAT IT PUTS THE ENTIRE TREATY BACK INTO NEGOTIATING PLAY.|
|00:09:04||WHO KNOWS HOW LONG IT WILL BE.|
|00:09:06||THE ESTIMATES I HAVE FROM THE NEGOTIATING TEAM COULD TAKE TWO YEARS, THREE YEARS.|
|00:09:10||WE'VE ALREADY BEEN A WHOLE YEAR WITHOUT INSPECTIONS, A WHOLE YEAR OF NOT KNOWING WHAT THEY'RE DOING.|
|00:09:16||LY TALK TOMORROW IN THE SECURITY BRIEFING ABOUT THE IMPACT THAT HAS ON OUR INTELLIGENCE AND THE DISSATISFACTION IN THE INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY WITH A PROLONGED AND CONTINUED DELAY IN GETTING THAT.|
|00:09:27||SO I SIMPLY SAY TO MY COLLEAGUES LET'S DO WHAT'S SMART HERE.|
|00:09:33||SECRETARY CLINTON SAID, THE NEW START TREATY WAS ALWAYS INTENDED TO REPLACE START.|
|00:09:38||THAT WAS THE DECISION MADE BY THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION.|
|00:09:41||I WANT TO EMPHASIZE AGAIN, PRESIDENT OBAMA WAS NOT THE PERSON WHO TRADE THE DECISION NOT TO SENATE -- WHO MADE THE DECISION NOT TO EXTEND START I.|
|00:09:55||NEITHER OF US WANTED TO DO IT BECAUSE UNDER THIS START AGREEMENT, WE ACTUALLY PUT IN A BETTER SYSTEM AND, ONE, LET ME ADD THAT GENERAL CHILTON EMPHASIS REDUCES THE CONSTRAINTS ON MISSLE DEFENSE.|
|00:10:16||SO HERE'S WHAT SECRETARY CLINTON SAYS FURTHER, I WOULD UNDERSCORE THE IMPORTANCE OF RATIFYING THE NEW START TREATY TO HAVE ANY CHANCE OF US BEGINNING TO HAVE A SERIOUS NEGOTIATION OVER TRACT KAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS.|
|00:10:30||NOW SOME -- TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS.|
|00:10:32||SOME SENATORS ARE SAYING, WHY DIDN'T THEY ADDRESS THEM AT THE SAME TIME?|
|00:10:36||WHY DIDN'T THEY GO IN AND SAY, WHY DIDN'T WE GET THIS DONE?|
|00:10:39||WHY DIDN'T WE GET THAT DONE?|
|00:10:41||FOR A COUPLE OF REASONS.|
|00:10:44||ONE, RUSSIA'S TACTICAL WEAPONS ARE PRIMARILY A THREAT TO OUR ALLIES IN EUROPE.|
|00:10:49||AND KNOWING THE DIFFERENCES OF THAT EQUATION TO HAVE LINKED OUR OWN STRATEGIC INTERESTS TO THAT NEGOTIATION AT THAT TIME WOULD HAVE LEFT US WHO KNOWS HOW LONG WITHOUT THE CAPACITY TO GET AN AGREEMENT, NUMBER ONE.|
|00:11:04||NUMBER TWO, LAST YEAR WHEN WE BEGAN THE NEGOTIATIONS ON NEW START, NATO WAS IN THE MIDST OF WORKING OUT ITS NEW STRATIGIC CONCEPT.|
|00:11:13||OUR ALLIES WERE IN THE MIDST OF ASSESSING THEIR SECURITY NEEDS.|
|00:11:16||SO IT REALLY WOULD HAVE BEEN IMPOSSIBLE TO REALLY HAVE THAT DISCUSSION WITHOUT THEM HAVING MADE THAT ASSESSMENT AND -- AND -- AND RESOLVED THEIR OWN SECURITY NEEDS AND DEFINITIONS.|
|00:11:29||BUT NOW NATO HAS COMPLETED THAT STRATIGIC CONCEPT.|
|00:11:34||WE'VE HEARD FROM A LOT OF EUROPEAN GOVERNMENTS ABOUT NEW START.|
|00:11:38||WHAT DO THEY SAY ABOUT NEW START?|
|00:11:41||WHAT DO OUR ALLIES SAY?|
|00:11:42||WE'RE NOT IN THIS BALLGAME ALL ALONE.|
|00:11:45||THEY ARE UNITED IN SUPPORT FOR THIS TREATY IN PART BECAUSE THEY SEE IT AS THE NECESSARY FIRST STEP TO BE ABLE TO HAVE THE NEGOTIATIONS THAT BRING THE REDUCTIONS IN TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS.|
|00:11:57||LET ME QUOTE SEKORKSI, POLAND'S FOREIGN MINISTER SAID, WITHOUT A NEW START TREATY IN PLACE, HOLES WILL APPEAR IN THE NUCLEAR UMBRELLA THAT THE U.|
|00:12:13||S. PROVIDES TO POLAND AND OTHER ALLIES, THE COLLECTIVE SECURITY GUARANTEE FOR NATO WEAPONS.|
|00:12:19||NEW START IS A NECESSARY STEPPING STONE TO FUTURE NEGOTIATIONS WITH RUSSIA ABOUT ITS TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS.|
|00:12:26||SO THEY BELIEVE YOU'VE GOT TO PASS START TO GET TO THIS DISCUSSION.|
|00:12:33||THIS IS THE LITHUANIA FOREIGN MINISTER, WE SEE THIS TREATY AS A PROLOGUE, AS AN ENTRANCE TO TALKS ABOUT SUB STRATEGIC WEAPONRY, WHICH IS MUCH MORE DANGEROUS AND QUITE DIFFICULT TO DETECT AND WE LIVING IN EAST EUROPE ESPECIALLY KNOW THIS.|
|00:12:49||AND THE SECRETARY GENERAL OF NATO SAID THIS -- QUOTE -- "WE NEED TRANSPARENCY AND REDUCTIONS OF SHORT-RANGE TACTICAL WEAPONS IN EUROPE.|
|00:12:57||THIS IS A KEY CONCERN FOR ALLIES, BUT WE CANNOT ADDRESS THIS DISPARITY UNTIL THE NEW START TREATY IS RATIFIED.|
|00:13:08||" I DON'T KNOW HOW MANY TIMES, YOU KNOW, YOU SORT OF HAVE TO MAKE THIS CONNECTION.|
|00:13:15||GENERAL CHILTON, WHO'S -- WHO'S IN CHARGE OF OUR NUCLEAR FORCES SAID THIS TO THE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE, "THE MOST PROXIMATE THREAT TO THE UNITED STATES, US, ARE THE ICBM AND SLBM WEAPONS BECAUSE THEY CAN AND ARE ABLE TO TARGET THE U.|
|00:13:33||S. HOMELAND AND DELIVER A DEVASTATING EFFECT ON THIS COUNTRY.|
|00:13:37||SO WE APPROPRIATELY FOCUSED IN THOSE AREAS IN THIS PARTICULAR TREATY FOR STRATIGIC REASONS.|
|00:13:44||TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS DON'T PROVIDE THE PROXIMATE THREAT THAT THE ICBM AND SLBM DO.|
|00:13:53||THE DISPARITY IN THE RUSSIAN AND TACTICAL ARSENALS, I HAVE ARE REPEAT, WE WANT TO ADDRESS IT I'M PREPARED TO PUT SOMETHING IN HERE IF THE SENATOR FROM IDAHO THINKS WE CAN FIND THE LANGUAGE AS WE DID WITH SENATOR DeMINT WHO HAS VERY STRONG LANGUAGE IN HERE ABOUT MISSLE DEFENSE, LET'S PUT IT IN HERE.|
|00:14:12||BUT IT DOESN'T PUT US AT A STRATIGIC DISADVANTAGE.|
|00:14:17||SECRETARY GATES AND ADMIRAL MULLEN STATED IN -- IN -- IN RESPONSE TO OUR QUESTIONS FOR THE RECORD -- QUOTE -- "BECAUSE OF THEIR LIMITED RANGE AND VERY DIFFERENT ROLES PLAYED BY STRATIGIC NUCLEAR FORCES, THE VAST MAJORITY OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS BUSH RUSSIAN NUCLEAR WEAPONS COULD NOT DIRECTLY INFLUENCE THE STRATIGIC BALANCE BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND RUSSIA.|
|00:14:40||" MAYBE YOU WANT TO LISTEN TO WHAT DONALD RUMSFELD SAID TO THE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE A FEW YEARS AGO -- QUOTE -- "I DON'T KNOW THAT WE WOULD EVER WANT SYMMETRY BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND RUSSIA IN TACTICAL NUCLEAR WEAPONS.|
|00:14:53||THEIR CIRCUMSTANCES IS DIFFERENT.|
|00:14:55||AND THEIR GEOGRAPHY IS DIFFERENT.|
|00:14:58||" GENERAL CHILTON SAID, RUSSIAN TACTICAL WEAPONS DO NOT DIRECTLY INFLUENCE THE STRATIGIC BALANCE BETWEEN THE U.|
|00:15:06||S. AN RUSSIA.|
|00:15:08||-- AND RUSSIA.|
|00:15:10||NUMERICAL SYMMETRY EXISTS IN A NUMBER OF WEAPONS, WE ESTIMATE THAT RUSSIA POSSESSES WHEN CONSIDERED IN THE CONTEXT OF OUR TOTAL CAPABILITY AND GIVEN FORCED LEVELS OF STRUCTURE IN NEW START, THIS ACEMETERY IS NOT ADESSED TO AFFECT -- AFFECT THE STRATIGIC ABILITY OF THE UNITED STATES AND RUSSIA.|
|00:15:32||WE HAVE A COUPLE OF OTHER COLLEAGUES WHO WANT TO SAY SOMETHING.|
|00:15:36||LET ME SAY TO MY COLLEAGUES ABOUT THE PROCESS AS WE GO FORWARD HERE.|
|00:15:40||THERE'S SOME TALK NOW THAT WE'RE REEFG A POINT WE'RE ON DAY -- REACHING THIS A POINT.|
|00:15:46||WE'RE ON DAY FIVE, WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON, THURSDAY, FRIDAY, SATURDAY, SUNDAY.|
|00:15:52||START I TOOK FIVE DAYS.|
|00:15:54||IF WE FILED A CLOTURE PETITION AT SOME POINT IN THE EVENING, FOR INSTANCE, WE WOULD STILL HAVE TWO DAYS BEFORE WE EVEN VOTE ON THAT.|
|00:16:02||TWO WHOLE DAYS BEFORE WE VOTE ON THAT AND THEN PRESUMING WE WERE TO ACHIEVE IT, WE HAVE 30 HOURS AFTER THAT WHICH CAN AMOUNT TO ALMOST TWO DAYS IN THE SENATE.|
|00:16:12||THAT WOULD MEAN NINE DAYS IF WE GO THAT DISTANCE, WE WOULD HAVE NINE DAYS ON A TREATY THAT IS SIMPLER THAN START I.|
|00:16:24||WE WOULD HAVE MORE DAYS ON THIS TREATY, SIMPLER ON START I, THAN WE HAD ON ALL MOSCOW START I, START II TREATIES PUT TOGETHER.|
|00:16:39||THE MAJORITY LEADER HAS GIVEN THE TIME TO THIS EFFORT.|
|00:16:44||WE'RE GIVING TIME TO IT.|
|00:16:45||WE WOULD HAVE A TIME TO VOTE ON EACH AMENDMENT, DELIBERATE EACH AMENDMENT, BUT I THINK IT'S IMPORTANT TO US TO CONSIDER A -- THE ROAD AHEAD HERE.|
|00:16:56||I RESERVE THE BALANCE OF OUR TIME.|
|00:17:00||THE PRESIDING OFFICER: THE SENATOR FROM GEORGIA'S RECOGNIZED.|
|00:17:03||CHAMBLISS: MR. PRESIDENT, I RISE TODAY IN SUPPORT OF THE RISCH|
Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, I thank the Senator from Oklahoma.
I will consume such time as I use for a moment. Let me say, first of all, again, I appreciate this amendment. There is not a lot of contention about the importance of addressing a lot of short-range tactical weapons, as we call them. The administration wants to do this as much as our friends on the other side of the aisle do, and I think the Senator from Idaho knows that.
Let me correct one fact for a minute that both the Senator from Texas and the Senator from Idaho said. They said the Russians will not have to reduce their strategic warheads and that they are already below the number of 1,550. That is not accurate. I won't go into detail here. We can reinforce this tomorrow in a classified session. But the Russians do have to reduce warheads under this requirement--not as much as us. Our defense community has made the judgment that because of our triad, which will remain robust, and for other reasons, we have a very significant advantage. Again, I will discuss that tomorrow in the classified briefing.
What I want to say to my colleague is that, again, I am 100 percent prepared to try to embrace this concept even further in the resolution of ratification. But we cannot do it in a way that requires this treaty to go back and be renegotiated. This is not a complicated amendment. There is a very simple reason why we should oppose this amendment as it is: because of the requirement that we go back. Because if we don't pass the START treaty, if we can't reach a bilateral agreement on the reduction of strategic weapons, there will be no discussion about tactical weapons. That is as plain as day. Every negotiator, everybody who has been part of this process, understands that. If we can't show our good faith to reduce and create a mutual verification system for strategic weapons, how are we going to sit in front of them and say, Oh, by the way, let's get you to reduce what is your advantage--it is an advantage, I acknowledge that--you go ahead and reduce it. They are going to laugh at us and we will have lost all of the verification we have today.
It is not just me who says that. The fact is Secretary Gates has been very clear about this, and Secretary Clinton likewise. Secretary Gates said this. I know my colleagues all respect him enormously.
We will never get to that step of reductions with the Russians on tactical nukes if this treaty on strategic nuclear weapons is not ratified.
It is a pretty simple equation, folks. This isn't a one-way street where we can stand here and say, You have to do this and you have to do that and, by the way, we don't care what you think about what we are doing, we are going to do what we want. That is not the way it works. There has to be some reciprocity in the process of reduction and verification and inspection, and so forth. They have things they don't want us to see and we have stuff we don't want them to see. There is plenty in this agreement where we protect our facilities from them being able to intrude on them excessively, because our folks don't want them to. That is the nature of a contentious relationship which is the reason you have to argue out, negotiate out a treaty in the first place.
If the Secretary of Defense is telling us--a Secretary of Defense, by the way, whom we all mutually respect enormously, but who was appointed to the job by President Bush--if he is telling us you have to pass this in order to get to the tactical nukes, I think we have to listen to that a little bit.
Let me point out--I want the Record to reflect I agree with the Senator from Idaho. They have many more tactical nukes. They have had for a long time. The reason is they have different strategic needs. They are in a different part of the world. For a long time, the Warsaw Pact and NATO were head to head and squared off, and so they saw a world in which they saw the potential of a land invasion. So for a long time they had tanks and mines and other things that were nuclear capable. What happened is we unilaterally, I might add, decided under President Bush, I think it was, President George Herbert Walker Bush, we decided this is dangerous. It doesn't make sense. It doesn't make sense for us. So we unilaterally announced--after the fall of the Soviet Union, President Bush announced we were going to ratchet down our tactical nuclear forces, and everybody agreed with that. It made sense.
So we did that and what happened is after that, President Boris Yeltsin in 1992 pledged that the production of warheads for ground-launched tactical missiles, artillery shells, and mines had stopped. They stopped it because we stopped it. And all of those warheads would be eliminated. He pledged that Russia would dispose of one-half of its tactical airborne and surface-to-air warheads as well as one-third of its tactical naval warheads. The Russian Defense Ministry said in 2007, the [Page: S10718] ground force tactical nuclear warheads had been eliminated. Air defense tactical warheads were reduced by 60 percent. Air Force tactical warheads were reduced by 50 percent. Naval tactical warheads were reduced by 30 percent. Guess what. That didn't happen with the treaty. It happened because we had what we call Presidential nuclear initiatives. Our President made the decision, President Bush: We don't need them, dangerous, reduce them, and the Russians followed.
I heard an estimate earlier of 2,000 or something--this is according to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists. We estimate they have a large inventory of operational nonstrategic warheads--5,390 is the number of tactical warheads, air defense tactical, et cetera. So they do still have more, and it still is a very legitimate concern to us.
That is why, I say to my colleagues, in the resolution of advice and consent we have the following declaration: (A) The Senate calls upon the President to pursue, following consultation with allies, an agreement with the Russian Federation that would address the disparity between the tactical nuclear weapons stockpiles of the Russian Federation and of the United States and would secure and reduce tactical nuclear weapons in a verifiable manner.
That is in the resolution. You can vote for that. In addition, we say: (B) Recognizing the difficulty the United States has faced in ascertaining with confidence the number of tactical nuclear weapons maintained by the Russian Federation and the security of those weapons, the Senate urges the President to engage the Russian Federation with the objectives of (1) establishing cooperative measures to give each Party to the New START Treaty improved confidence regarding the accurate accounting and security of tactical nuclear weapons maintained by the other Party; and (2) providing United States or other international assistance to help the Russian Federation ensure the accurate accounting and security of its tactical nuclear weapons.
I am prepared--if that language doesn't satisfy folks, let's go look further. I am happy to do that. But we are not going to do it in a way that precludes us from going to the very negotiations you want to have. It doesn't make sense, not to mention the fact that it puts the entire treaty back into negotiating play. Who knows how long it would be.
The estimates I have from the negotiating team is it could take 2, 3 years. We have been a whole year now without inspections and knowing what they are doing. I will talk, tomorrow in the security briefing, about the impact that has on our intelligence, and the dissatisfaction in the intelligence community with a prolonged and continued delay in getting that.
So I simply say to my colleagues, let's do what is smart. Secretary Clinton said: The New START Treaty was always intended to replace START. That was the decision made by the Bush administration.
I emphasize again that President Obama was not the person who made the decision not to extend START I. The Russians didn't do it unilaterally. Neither of us wanted to do it, because under this START agreement, we actually put in a better system, and one, let me say, that General Chilton emphasizes reduces the constraints on missile defense.
So here is what Secretary Clinton said: ``I would underscore the importance of ratifying the New START Treaty to have any chance of us beginning to have a serious negotiation over tactical nuclear weapons.'' Some Senators are saying: Why didn't they address them at the same time and say we have to get this and that done? Well, for a couple reasons. One, Russia's tactical weapons are primarily a threat to our allies in Europe. Knowing the differences of that equation, to have linked our own strategic interests to that negotiation at that time would have left us who knows how long without the capacity to get an agreement, No. 1. No. 2, last year when we began negotiations on New START, NATO was in the midst of working out its new strategic concept. Our allies were in the midst of assessing their security needs. It would have been impossible to have that discussion without them having made that assessment and resolved their own security needs and definitions.
But now NATO has completed that strategic concept. We have heard from a lot of European governments about New START. What do they say and what do our allies say? We are not in this ball game alone. They are united in support for this treaty, in part because they see it as the necessary first step to be able to have the negotiations that bring the reductions in tactical nuclear weapons.
Let me quote Radoslaw Sikorski, Poland's Foreign Minister: Without a New START Treaty in place, holes will soon appear in the nuclear umbrella that the U.S. provides to Poland and other allies under Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, the collective security guarantee for NATO members. Moreover, New START is a necessary stepping stone to future negotiations with Russia about its tactical nuclear weapons.
So they believe you have to pass START to get to this discussion.
This is the Lithuanian Foreign Minister: We see this treaty as a prologue, as an entrance to start talks about substrategic weaponry, which is much more endangerous, and it is quite difficult to detect. And we who are living in east Europe especially know this.
The Secretary General of NATO said: We need transparency and reductions of short-range tactical weapons in Europe. This is a key concern for allies. But we cannot address this disparity until the New START Treaty is ratified.
I don't know how many times you have to make this connection. General Chilton, who is in charge of our nuclear forces, said this to the Armed Services Committee: The most proximate threat to the United States, us, are the ICBM and SLBM weapons because they can and are able to target the U.S. homeland and deliver a devastating effect on this country. So we appropriately focused in those areas in this particular treaty for strategic reasons. Tactical nuclear weapons don't provide the proximate threat that the ICBMs and SLBMs do.
The disparity in U.S. and Russian tactical arsenals, I repeat, we want to address. I am prepared to put something in here--if the Senator from Idaho thinks we can find the language, as we did with Senator DeMint, who has strong language in here about missile defense, let's put it in here. But it doesn't put us at a strategic disadvantage.
Secretary Gates and Admiral Mullen stated, in response to our questions, for the record: Because of their limited range and the very different roles played by strategic nuclear forces, the vast majority of Russian tactical nuclear weapons cannot directly influence the strategic nuclear balance between the United States and Russia.
Donald Rumsfeld said this to the Foreign Relations Committee a few years ago: ..... I don't know that we would ever want to have symmetry between the United States and Russia [in tactical nuclear weapons]. Their circumstance is different and their geography is different.
General Chilton said: Under the assumptions of limited range and different roles, Russian tactical nuclear weapons do not directly influence the strategic balance between the U.S. and Russia. Though numerical asymmetry exists in the numbers of tactical nuclear weapons we estimate Russia possesses, when considered within the context of our total capability, and given force levels as structured in New START, this asymmetry is not assessed to substantially affect the strategic stability between the United States and Russia.
There is more here. I will reserve the balance of time because other colleagues want to say something. First, let me say this about the process as we go forward. There is some talk that we are now reaching a point--we are on day five--we had Wednesday afternoon, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and now Sunday. That is 5 days. START I took 5 days. If we filed a cloture motion at some point in the evening, for instance, we would still have 2 days before we even vote on that. Then, presuming we were to achieve it, we have 30 hours after that, which can amount to almost 2 days in the Senate. That would mean 9 days, if we go that distance on this treaty, which is simpler than START I. We would have more days on this treaty--simpler than START I--than we had on all 3--the Moscow Treaty, START II, and START I treaties put together.
I hope my colleagues will recognize that the majority leader has given time to this effort. We are giving time to it. We want amendments. No amendment, I think, would be struck. We would have time to vote on each amendment and deliberate each amendment. But I think it is important for us to consider the road ahead.
I reserve the remainder of our time.