[Senate Hearing 113-270]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]




                                                        S. Hrg. 113-270
NOMINATIONS BEFORE THE SENATE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE, FIRST SESSION, 
                             113TH CONGRESS
=======================================================================

                                HEARINGS

                               BEFORE THE

                      COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
                          UNITED STATES SENATE

                    ONE HUNDRED THIRTEENTH CONGRESS

                             FIRST SESSION

                                   ON

                             NOMINATIONS OF

   HON. CHARLES T. HAGEL; GEN LLOYD J. AUSTIN III, USA; GEN DAVID M. 
 RODRIGUEZ, USA; HON. ALAN F. ESTEVEZ; MR. FREDERICK E. VOLLRATH; MR. 
ERIC K. FANNING; GEN. PHILIP M. BREEDLOVE, USAF; GEN MARTIN E. DEMPSEY, 
 USA; ADM JAMES A. WINNEFELD, JR., USN; HON. STEPHEN W. PRESTON; HON. 
JON T. RYMER; MS. SUSAN J. RABERN; MR. DENNIS V. McGINN; ADM CECIL E.D. 
  HANEY, USN; LTG CURTIS M. SCAPARROTTI, USA; HON. DEBORAH LEE JAMES; 
 HON. JESSICA GARFOLA WRIGHT; MR. FRANK G. KLOTZ; MR. MARCEL J. LETTRE 
 II; MR. KEVIN A. OHLSON; MR. MICHAEL D. LUMPKIN; HON. JAMIE M. MORIN; 
                         AND HON. JO ANN ROONEY

                               ----------                              

        JANUARY 31; FEBRUARY 12, 14, 28; APRIL 11; JULY 18, 25, 30; 
                  SEPTEMBER 19; OCTOBER 10, 2013

                               ----------                              

         Printed for the use of the Committee on Armed Services


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NOMINATIONS BEFORE THE SENATE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE, FIRST SESSION, 
                             113TH CONGRESS






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                                                        S. Hrg. 113-270
 
NOMINATIONS BEFORE THE SENATE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE, FIRST SESSION, 
                             113TH CONGRESS
=======================================================================

                                HEARINGS

                               BEFORE THE

                      COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
                          UNITED STATES SENATE

                    ONE HUNDRED THIRTEENTH CONGRESS

                             FIRST SESSION

                                   ON

                             NOMINATIONS OF

   HON. CHARLES T. HAGEL; GEN LLOYD J. AUSTIN III, USA; GEN DAVID M. 
 RODRIGUEZ, USA; HON. ALAN F. ESTEVEZ; MR. FREDERICK E. VOLLRATH; MR. 
ERIC K. FANNING; GEN. PHILIP M. BREEDLOVE, USAF; GEN MARTIN E. DEMPSEY, 
 USA; ADM JAMES A. WINNEFELD, JR., USN; HON. STEPHEN W. PRESTON; HON. 
JON T. RYMER; MS. SUSAN J. RABERN; MR. DENNIS V. McGINN; ADM CECIL E.D. 
  HANEY, USN; LTG CURTIS M. SCAPARROTTI, USA; HON. DEBORAH LEE JAMES; 
 HON. JESSICA GARFOLA WRIGHT; MR. FRANK G. KLOTZ; MR. MARCEL J. LETTRE 
 II; MR. KEVIN A. OHLSON; MR. MICHAEL D. LUMPKIN; HON. JAMIE M. MORIN; 
                         AND HON. JO ANN ROONEY

                               __________

 JANUARY 31; FEBRUARY 12, 14, 28; APRIL 11; JULY 18, 25, 30; SEPTEMBER 
                          19; OCTOBER 10, 2013

                               __________

         Printed for the use of the Committee on Armed Services






        Available via the World Wide Web: http://www.fdsys.gov/

                               __________





                      COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES

                     CARL LEVIN, Michigan, Chairman

JACK REED, Rhode Island              JAMES M. INHOFE, Oklahoma
BILL NELSON, Florida                 JOHN McCAIN, Arizona
CLAIRE McCASKILL, Missouri           JEFF SESSIONS, Alabama
MARK UDALL, Colorado                 SAXBY CHAMBLISS, Georgia
KAY R. HAGAN, North Carolina         ROGER F. WICKER, Mississippi
JOE MANCHIN III, West Virginia       KELLY AYOTTE, New Hampshire
JEANNE SHAHEEN, New Hampshire        DEB FISCHER, Nebraska
KIRSTEN E. GILLIBRAND, New York      LINDSEY GRAHAM, South Carolina
RICHARD BLUMENTHAL, Connecticut      DAVID VITTER, Louisiana
JOE DONNELLY, Indiana                ROY BLUNT, Missouri
MAZIE K. HIRONO, Hawaii              MIKE LEE, Utah
TIM KAINE, Virginia                  TED CRUZ, Texas
ANGUS KING, Maine

                    Peter K. Levine, Staff Director

                John A. Bonsell, Minority Staff Director

                                  (ii)


                                     
                            C O N T E N T S

                              ----------                              

                    CHRONOLOGICAL LIST OF WITNESSES

                                                                   Page

                            january 31, 2013

Nomination of Hon. Charles T. Hagel to be Secretary of Defense...     1

Statements of:

Nunn, Hon. Sam, U.S. Senator from the State of Georgia, Retired..     6
Warner, Hon. John, U.S. Senator from the State of Virginia, 
  Retired........................................................     9
Hagel, Hon. Charles T., to be Secretary of Defense...............    12

                           february 12, 2013

Business Meeting to Consider the Nomination of the Honorable 
  Charles T. Hagel to be the Secretary of Defense................   313

                           february 14, 2013

Nominations of GEN Lloyd J. Austin III, USA, for Reappointment to 
  the Grade of General and to be Commander, U.S. Central Command; 
  and GEN David M. Rodriguez, USA, for Reappointment to the Grade 
  of General and to be Commander, U.S. Africa Command............   355

Statements of:

Austin, GEN Lloyd J., III, USA, for Reappointment to the Grade of 
  General and to be Commander, U.S. Central Command..............   360
Rodriguez, GEN David M., USA, for Reappointment to the Grade of 
  General and to be Commander, U.S. Africa Command...............   361

                           february 28, 2013

Nominations of Hon. Alan F. Estevez to be Principal Deputy Under 
  Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and 
  Logistics; Mr. Frederick E. Vollrath to be Assistant Secretary 
  of Defense for Readiness and Force Management; and Mr. Eric K. 
  Fanning to be Under Secretary of the Air Force.................   529

Statements of:

Estevez, Hon. Alan F., to be Principal Deputy Under Secretary of 
  Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics.............   532
Vollrath, Mr. Frederick E., to be Assistant Secretary of Defense 
  for Readiness and Force Management.............................   533
Fanning, Mr. Eric K., to be Under Secretary of the Air Force.....   534

                                  iii
                             april 11, 2013

Nomination of Gen. Philip M. Breedlove, USAF, for Reappointment 
  to the Grade of General and to be Commander, U.S. European 
  Command and Supreme Allied Commander, Europe...................   687

Statement of:

Breedlove, Gen. Philip M., USAF, for Reappointment to the Grade 
  of General and to be Commander, U.S. European Command, and 
  Supreme Allied Commander, Europe...............................   692

                             july 18, 2013

Nominations of GEN Martin E. Dempsey, USA, for Reappointment to 
  the Grade of General and Reappointment as Chairman of the Joint 
  Chiefs of Staff; and ADM James A. Winnefeld, Jr., USN, for 
  Reappointment to the Grade of Admiral and Reappointment as Vice 
  Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff..........................   765

Statements of:

Dempsey, GEN Martin E., USA, for Reappointment to the Grade of 
  General and Reappointment as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of 
  Staff..........................................................   769
Winnefeld, ADM James A., Jr., USN, for Reappointment to the Grade 
  of Admiral and Reappointment as Vice Chairman of the Joint 
  Chiefs of Staff................................................   772

                             july 25, 2013

Nominations of Hon. Stephen W. Preston to be General Counsel of 
  the Department of Defense; Hon. Jon T. Rymer to be Inspector 
  General of the Department of Defense; Ms. Susan J. Rabern to be 
  Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Financial Management and 
  Comptroller; and Mr. Dennis V. McGinn to be Assistant Secretary 
  of the Navy for Energy, Installations, and Environment.........   949

Statements of:

Warner, Hon. John, U.S. Senator from the State of Virginia, 
  Retired........................................................   953
Preston, Hon. Stephen W., to be General Counsel of the Department 
  of Defense.....................................................   956
Rymer, Hon. Jon T., to be Inspector General of the Department of 
  Defense........................................................   957
Rabern, Ms. Susan J., to be Assistant Secretary of the Navy for 
  Financial Management and Comptroller...........................   958
McGinn, Mr. Dennis V., to be Assistant Secretary of the Navy for 
  Energy, Installations, and Environment.........................   959

                             july 30, 2013

Nominations of ADM Cecil E.D. Haney, USN, for Reappointment to 
  the Grade of Admiral and to be Commander, U.S. Strategic 
  Command; and LTG Curtis M. Scaparrotti, USA, to be General and 
  Commander, United Nations Command/Combined Forces Command/U.S. 
  Forces Korea...................................................  1081

Statements of:

Haney, ADM Cecil E.D., USN, for Reappointment to the Grade of 
  Admiral and to be Commander, U.S. Strategic Command............  1084
Scaparrotti, LTG Curtis M., USA, to be General and Commander, 
  United Nations Command/Combined Forces Command/U.S. Forces 
  Korea..........................................................  1085

                           september 19, 2013

Nominations of Hon. Deborah Lee James to be Secretary of the Air 
  Force; Hon. Jessica Garfola Wright to be Under Secretary of 
  Defense for Personnel and Readiness; Mr. Frank G. Klotz to be 
  Under Secretary of Energy for Nuclear Security; Mr. Marcel J. 
  Lettre II to be Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for 
  Intelligence; and Mr. Kevin A. Ohlson to be a Judge of the U.S. 
  Court of Appeals for the Armed Services........................  1157

Statements of:

Conrad, Hon. Kent, U.S. Senator from the State of North Dakota, 
  Retired........................................................  1161
James, Hon. Deborah Lee, to be Secretary of the Air Force........  1163
Wright, Jessica Garfola, to be Under Secretary of Defense for 
  Personnel and Readiness........................................  1164
Klotz, Mr. Frank G., to be Under Secretary of Energy for Nuclear 
  Security.......................................................  1166
Lettre, Mr. Marcel J., II, to be Principal Deputy Under Secretary 
  of Defense for Intelligence....................................  1168
Ohlson, Mr. Kevin A., to be a Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals 
  for the Armed Services.........................................  1169

                            october 10, 2013

Nominations of Mr. Michael D. Lumpkin to be Assistant Secretary 
  of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict; 
  Hon. Jamie M. Morin to be Director of Cost Assessment and 
  Program Evaluation (CAPE), Department of Defense; and Hon. Jo 
  Ann Rooney to be Under Secretary of the Navy...................  1353

Statements of:

Hoeven, Hon. John, U.S. Senator from the State of North Dakota...  1358
Morin, Hon. Jamie M., to be Director of Cost Assessment and 
  Program Evaluation, Department of Defense......................  1361
Lumpkin, Mr. Michael D., to be Assistant Secretary of Defense for 
  Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict..................  1362
Rooney, Hon. Jo Ann, to be Under Secretary of the Navy...........  1363

APPENDIX.........................................................  1485


     NOMINATION OF HON. CHARLES T. HAGEL TO BE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

                              ----------                              


                       THURSDAY, JANUARY 31, 2013

                                       U.S. Senate,
                               Committee on Armed Services,
                                                    Washington, DC.
    The committee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:32 a.m. in room 
SD-G50, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Senator Carl Levin 
(chairman) presiding.
    Committee members present: Senators Levin, Reed, Nelson, 
McCaskill, Udall, Hagan, Manchin, Shaheen, Gillibrand, 
Blumenthal, Donnelly, Hirono, Kaine, King, Inhofe, McCain, 
Sessions, Chambliss, Wicker, Ayotte, Fischer, Graham, Vitter, 
Blunt, Lee, and Cruz.
    Committee staff members present: Richard D. DeBobes, staff 
director; Travis E. Smith, chief clerk; Leah C. Brewer, 
nominations and hearings clerk; and Mary J. Kyle, legislative 
clerk.
    Majority staff members present: Jonathan D. Clark, counsel; 
Jonathan S. Epstein, counsel; Gabriella E. Fahrer, counsel; 
Richard W. Fieldhouse, professional staff member; Creighton 
Greene, professional staff member; Michael J. Kuiken, 
professional staff member; Gerald J. Leeling, counsel; Peter K. 
Levine, general counsel; Jason W. Maroney, counsel; Thomas K. 
McConnell, professional staff member; William G.P. Monahan, 
counsel; Michael J. Noblet, professional staff member; Roy F. 
Phillips, professional staff member; John H. Quirk V, 
professional staff member; Robie I. Samanta Roy, professional 
staff member; Russell L. Shaffer, counsel; and William K. 
Sutey, professional staff member.
    Minority staff members present: John A. Bonsell, minority 
staff director; Adam J. Barker, professional staff member; 
Steven M. Barney, minority counsel; Thomas W. Goffus, 
professional staff member; Ambrose R. Hock, professional staff 
member; Anthony J. Lazarski, professional staff member; Daniel 
A. Lerner, professional staff member; Lucian L. Niemeyer, 
professional staff member; and Robert M. Soofer, professional 
staff member.
    Staff assistants present: Jennifer R. Knowles, Mariah K. 
McNamara, and Brian F. Sebold.
    Committee members' assistants present: Carolyn Chuhta, 
assistant to Senator Reed; Jeff Fatora, assistant to Senator 
Nelson; Jason Rauch, assistant to Senator McCaskill; Casey 
Howard, assistant to Senator Udall; Brian Nagle, assistant to 
Senator Hagan; Patrick Hayes, assistant to Senator Manchin; 
Chad Kreikemeier, assistant to Senator Shaheen; Elana Broitman, 
assistant to Senator Gillilbrand; Ethan Saxon, assistant to 
Senator Blumenthal; Marta McLellan Ross, assistant to Senator 
Donnelly; Nick Ikeda, assistant to Senator Hirono; Jim Catella, 
assistant to Senator King; Paul C. Hutton IV, assistant to 
Senator McCain; T. Finch Fulton and Lenwood Landrum, assistants 
to Senator Sessions; Joseph Lai, assistant to Senator Wicker; 
Brad Bowman, assistant to Senator Ayotte; Craig Abele, 
assistant to Senator Graham; Charles Prosch, assistant to 
Senator Blunt; Peter Blair, assistant to Senator Lee; and 
Brooke Bacak, assistant to Senator Cruz.

       OPENING STATEMENT OF SENATOR CARL LEVIN, CHAIRMAN

    Chairman Levin. Good morning. The committee meets today to 
consider the nomination of former Senator Chuck Hagel to be 
Secretary of Defense.
    Before we begin, I want to first welcome Senator Inhofe as 
the new ranking Republican on our committee, succeeding Senator 
McCain. Senator McCain has been a great partner over the last 6 
years, and I thank him for all that he has done to get our 
bills enacted, for all of his leadership on a host of issues, 
for his support of the work of this committee, and for always 
keeping our hearings lively.
    Senator Inhofe has shown his strong commitment to the 
national defense over his 20 years on this committee, and I 
know that we are going to work well together to continue the 
bipartisan tradition of the committee.
    We're also pleased to welcome the eight Senators who are 
joining the committee this year, both those who are new to the 
Senate and those who are new to our committee--Senators 
Donnelly, Hirono, Kaine, and King on the Democratic side, and 
Senators Blunt, Cruz, Fischer, and Lee on the Republican side. 
You will all find that this is a wonderful committee where we 
work across party lines to support our troops and their 
families and their national defense mission.
    I would also like to pause for a moment to offer my thanks 
and the thanks of our committee to Secretary Leon Panetta, who 
delayed his retirement and his return to California to serve 
our country first as Director of Central Intelligence and then 
as Secretary of Defense. Secretary Panetta has provided a 
steady hand at the Department of Defense (DOD) through 2 very 
difficult years, and has earned our great respect and our 
appreciation.
    Finally before we get started, I would like to announce 
that the committee will be holding hearings next week on 
Benghazi and the week thereafter on the impact of the sequester 
on DOD.
    Senator Hagel, we welcome you to the Senate Armed Services 
Committee and as an old friend of those of us with whom you 
served during your years in the Senate. There are few jobs that 
are more demanding than the position to which you have been 
nominated. The hours are long and extremely challenging, and 
require sacrifices from both the Secretary and his family.
    We traditionally give our nominees an opportunity to 
introduce their families at these hearings, and we would 
welcome your doing so during your opening statement.
    If confirmed, Senator Hagel would be the first former 
enlisted man and the first veteran of the Vietnam war to serve 
as Secretary of Defense. You cannot read Senator Hagel's 
account of his military service and not be impressed by it. As 
Senator Hagel explained a few years ago, ``Probably most 
fundamental for me when we talk of going to war, we need to 
think it through carefully, not just for the political, and the 
geopolitical, and the diplomatic, and the economic 
consequences, and those are important. But at least for me,'' 
he said, ``this old infantry sergeant thinks about when I was 
in Vietnam in 1968, someone needs to represent that perspective 
in our Government as well. The people in Washington make the 
policy, but it's the little guys who come back in the body 
bags.''
    Senator Hagel's background provides an invaluable 
perspective, not only with respect to the difficult decisions 
and recommendations that a Secretary of Defense must make 
regarding the use of force and the commitment of U.S. troops 
overseas, but also with respect to the day-to-day decisions 
that a secretary must make to ensure that our men and women in 
uniform and their families receive the support and assistance 
that they need and deserve.
    It would be a positive message for our soldiers, sailors, 
airmen, and marines in harm's way around the world to know that 
one of their own holds the highest office in DOD, and that he 
has their backs.
    Senator Hagel, you would be in a position to make key 
recommendations regarding Afghanistan, where we are down to the 
pre-surge level of troops with 66,000 military personnel in the 
country. The Secretary of Defense is called upon to advise the 
President on the size and mission of a post-2014 residual 
force, and the pace of the drawdown between now and the end of 
2014. The key to this transition is ensuring the readiness and 
ability of Afghanistan security forces to take over the defense 
of their own country. I have always believed that should be our 
main mission and its key to success.
    During my trip to Afghanistan with Senator Jack Reed last 
month, we heard from U.S. commanders on the ground that 
Afghanistan security forces are operating on their own on most 
operations, including conducting more than 85 percent of 
operations with limited or no U.S. support in the difficult 
Regional Command East. Yet difficult obstacles remain to the 
process of reducing our forces and shifting responsibility to 
Afghanistan forces, including the difficulty of negotiating a 
status of forces agreement, including recent reports that the 
Afghanistan Government might slow down a successful program of 
growing and training the Afghanistan Local Police, and 
including questions about the current plan to reduce the size 
of the Afghanistan National Security Forces from 352,000 to 
around 230,000 after 2015.
    We face a number of new and growing threats elsewhere in 
the world, such as the ongoing threat posed by Iran's nuclear 
weapons program and the increasingly destructive civil war in 
Syria with the risk that conflict could result in the loss of 
control over that country's substantial stockpile of chemical 
weapons. There's also the continuing instability in other 
countries affected by the Arab Spring, the growth of al Qaeda 
affiliates in ungoverned regions, including Yemen, Somalia, and 
North Africa, and the continued unpredictable behavior of a 
nuclear armed regime in North Korea.
    We face these challenges at a time when the DOD budget is 
under a unique pressure as a result of cuts previously agreed 
upon by Congress, the budgeting by Continuing Resolution (CR), 
and the impending threat of a sequester. Secretary Panetta has 
said that a sequester would be devastating for our military. 
Senator Hagel's views today on the CR and the sequester will be 
of great interest to this committee and to the Nation.
    Those of us who have served with Senator Hagel in the 
Senate know that he is a man who is not afraid to speak his 
mind. Senator Hagel has made a number of statements over the 
course of his career which committee members will ask him about 
during today's hearing. For example, Senator Hagel has stated 
that unilateral sanctions against Iran, ``are exactly the wrong 
approach,'' and that, ``they are the worst thing we can do 
would be to try to isolate Iran''. I believe that while 
effective multilateral sanctions are preferable, that 
unilateral sanctions are an important part of the approach that 
the Obama administration has followed, and that Congress has 
supported. It appears that sanctions are producing tremendous 
pressure on Iran.
    Another statement which has raised concern is Senator 
Hagel's recommendation that we conduct, ``direct, 
unconditional, and comprehensive talks with the Government of 
Iran''. Now while there is value in communicating with our 
adversaries, the formulation used by Senator Hagel seemed to 
imply a willingness to talk to Iran on some issues that I 
believe that most of us would view as non-negotiable, and, 
therefore, any willingness to talk to Iran would need to be 
highly conditional. Senator Hagel's reassurance to me in my 
office that he supports the Obama administration's strong 
stance against Iran is significant, and we look forward to 
hearing from Senator Hagel today in some depth on that subject.
    We will also be interested in Senator Hagel's addressing 
troubling statements that he has made about Israel and its 
supporters here in the United States, a statement in 2008 that 
our policy of non-engagement with the Syrians, ``has isolated 
us more than the Syrians,'' and a 2009 statement that ``we 
should not isolate Hamas, a terrorist organization''.
    There is much to be explored at this hearing, but as we 
struggle with the difficult security challenges facing our 
Nation, the President needs to have a Secretary of Defense in 
whom he has trust, who will give him unvarnished advice, a 
person of integrity, and one who has a personal understanding 
of the consequences of decisions relative to the use of 
military force. Senator Hagel certainly has those critically 
important qualifications to lead DOD.
    Senator Inhofe.

              STATEMENT OF SENATOR JAMES M. INHOFE

    Senator Inhofe. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. First of all, I 
would like to echo your remarks about Secretary Panetta and the 
work that he has done. I do not see him here today, but I do 
recall when he was first nominated, I was probably one of the 
first phone calls to him, and I have enjoyed working with him.
    With Senator McCain, I feel the same way. I will certainly 
continue to depend on his counsel, and you and I have worked 
very well together in the past.
    Mr. Chairman, before I continue my opening statement, I 
would like to raise a concern about the sufficiency of 
materials provided to this committee by our nominee. Senator 
Hagel was requested to provide the speeches he has delivered 
over the last 5 years, yet his initial submission was for only 
four speeches. Even though, as was noticed by Senator Cruz that 
he had honoraria for 12 speeches, but submitted 4 speeches. We 
received some more, but only late last night. I think it would 
have been a lot more helpful if we had received them before 
that, and I am hoping that we will be able to get that 
information before we have to cast votes on this nominee. Thank 
you, Mr. Chairman.
    The President's nomination of Senator Hagel to serve as the 
next Secretary of Defense comes at a critical juncture in our 
military and national security interests. Senator Hagel is a 
good man who has a record of service. I first learned of that 
when he was first elected, and I have been a great admirer of 
the time that he spent in Vietnam and the sacrifices that he 
made.
    While his service is commendable, the fate of his 
nomination should be decided by the totality of his record. It 
is the votes that he has cast, the statements that he has made 
over the many years of his career that will inform us as to his 
judgment, his view of America's role in the world, and his view 
of the military required to support that role.
    As I told Senator Hagel in my office over 2 weeks ago, that 
after a long and careful review of his record, and there are 
things that he has said and there are things that I have 
personally experienced with him, that we are too 
philosophically opposed on the pressing issues facing our 
country, for me to support his nomination. Therefore, I told 
him I would not be supporting his nomination.
    His record demonstrates what I view as a lack of steadfast 
opposition to policies that diminish U.S. power and influence 
throughout the world, as well as a recent trend of policy 
reversals that seem based on political expediency rather than 
on core beliefs.
    On many of the security challenges facing U.S. interests 
around the world, Senator Hagel's record is deeply troubling 
and out of the mainstream. Too often, it seems, he is willing 
to subscribe to a worldwide view that is predicated on 
appeasing our adversaries while shunning our friends. I 
remember quoting Hiram Mann, who said, ``No man survives when 
freedom fails, the best men rot in filthy jails, and those who 
cry `appease, appease' are hanged by those they tried to 
please.''
    I am mentioning a few of these things because they are 
going to come out in this hearing. In 2000, an overwhelming 
majority of Senators sent a letter to President Clinton 
reaffirming our solidarity with Israel. I was one of them who 
carried that letter around. I remember it well. Senator Hagel 
was one of just four who refused to sign that letter, and I am 
sure he will want to comment about that.
    In 2001, he was one of just two Senators who voted against 
a bill extending harsh sanctions against Iran. A year later, he 
urged the Bush administration to support Iran's membership in 
the World Trade Organization. Senator Hagel voted against a 
resolution designating Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corp, a group 
responsible for killing American soldiers in Iraq and 
Afghanistan, as a terrorist organization. On multiple 
occasions, he has advocated for direct negotiations with Iran, 
a regime that continues to repress its people, doggedly pursue 
a nuclear weapon capability, and employ terrorist proxies, 
including Hamas, Hezbollah, who threaten the security of Israel 
and the region.
    Senator Hagel has also been an outspoken supporter of the 
nuclear disarmament and the Global Zero movement. We are very 
sensitive to that, and we know that the President has said many 
times he wants a nuclear free world, and I know that Senator 
Hagel is right there with him. But at a time when North Korea's 
belligerent actions threaten our allies with their nuclear 
capabilities and security of our own Nation and that of our 
allies, why would we want to unilaterally disarm ourselves of 
nuclear capability?
    Of late, however, Senator Hagel has expressed views in 
meetings with Senate colleagues, I have been informed, and 
through the press that appear glaringly at odds with many of 
his long-held positions, particularly on issues dealing with 
Israel, Iran, and our nuclear arsenal. This apparent 
willingness to walk back or alter his position, possibly for 
the sake of political expediency on such important issues, is 
deeply troubling and sends a concerning message to our allies 
and adversaries alike.
    Though I respect Senator Hagel, his record to date 
demonstrates that he would be a staunch advocate for the 
continuation of the misguided policies of the President's first 
term. Retreating from America's unique global leadership role 
and shrinking the military will not make America safer. On the 
contrary, it will embolden our enemies, endanger our allies, 
and provide opportunity for nations that do not share our 
interests to fill a global leadership vacuum we leave behind.
    It is for these reasons that I believe that he is the wrong 
person to lead the Pentagon at this perilous and consequential 
time.
    Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Inhofe.
    We have two former chairmen of this committee with us to 
introduce Senator Hagel. No Senator has had two dearer friends 
or better mentors than I have had with Senators Nunn and 
Warner. I just want to welcome them back to this committee. I 
do not have to tell them that they are among dear, dear 
friends, those of us who have known them and who have worked 
with them. It is a real, real treat actually to welcome you 
back to the committee.
    I think I will call on you, Senator Nunn, first. I think we 
will call on you alphabetically. I do not have any better way 
to do it. Sam, welcome back.

  STATEMENT OF HON. SAM NUNN, U.S. SENATOR FROM THE STATE OF 
                        GEORGIA, RETIRED

    Senator Nunn. First, for the record, seniority and age are 
two different things. [Laughter.]
    Chairman Levin, Ranking Member Inhofe, members of the Armed 
Services Committee, I am honored to join John Warner in 
presenting our friend, Chuck Hagel, to the committee and 
recommending that Chuck be confirmed as our Nation's 24th 
Secretary of Defense.
    I think it is worth noting that 68 years ago this month, 
John Warner enlisted in the U.S. Navy to fight in World War II. 
That was the start of his great career of public service, and 
John, I am very proud to be here by your side.
    Mr. Chairman, I spent a lot of my Senate career sitting in 
your seat waiting on a quorum. Congratulations on not having to 
do that today. [Laughter.]
    Chairman Levin. I do not how long it will last, but thanks 
for pointing it out.
    Senator Nunn. Mr. Chairman, I think it should be noted that 
you and Senator McCain have effectively guided this committee 
in its important role as a compelling and absolutely essential 
voice for a strong and effective defense. Together you have 
managed to pass authorization bills, even during contentious 
times. I thank you both for your dedicated service to our 
Nation. I am confident, Mr. Chairman and Senator Inhofe, that 
you will continue this tradition, and that Senator McCain will 
still be a very valuable member and voice on this committee.
    I believe that our Nation is fortunate to have a nominee 
for Secretary of Defense with the character, the experience, 
the courage, and the leadership that Chuck Hagel would bring to 
this position. First, Chuck is acutely aware that even in an 
age of rapid technological advances, our military capability 
and effectiveness depend on the quality and the morale of the 
people who serve our Nation in uniform, as well as the families 
that support them.
    Chuck received two Purple Hearts in Vietnam, and when he 
returned home, he continued to fight for veterans and for 
Active Duty military personnel. He knows that our people are 
our strongest assets. Second, Chuck's experience in Vietnam 
shaped his life and his perspective. War for Chuck Hagel is not 
an attraction. I am confident that if confirmed he will ask the 
hard and the smart questions before sending troops into battle.
    Chuck Hagel knows that the United States has vital 
interests that are worth fighting for and dying for. He also 
knows that war should be a last resort and that our Nation must 
effectively use all of our tools, not limited only to our 
military, to protect our important and to protect our vital 
interests.
    Certainly, Mr. Chairman, there is a tension in these 
values, but it is a tension that we should welcome in the 
thought process and in the advice that our Secretary of Defense 
gives to our Commander in Chief and to this Congress.
    From our service together on the Defense Policy Board in 
recent years, I know that Chuck Hagel has a clear world view, 
and that it aligns with the mainstream of U.S. foreign and 
defense policy, and also with President Obama. Chuck Hagel 
believes that we must build and preserve American strength as a 
force for good in the world. He recognizes that protecting our 
interests requires strong allies and friends, as well as strong 
American leadership.
    Third, Chuck has the depth of experience and the leadership 
skills required to handle this tough job. There is certainly no 
shortage of security challenges around the world, as this 
committee knows, and as you have enumerated this morning, Mr. 
Chairman. A very large and impressive group of former Cabinet 
officials and public servants from both sides of the aisle have 
said that they trust Chuck Hagel with this important 
responsibility. I strongly agree.
    Fourth, on the fiscal side, I am confident that Chuck will 
be a powerful advocate for a common sense approach, both within 
the administration and here on Capitol Hill regarding fiscal 
challenges to the defense budget. He understands that our 
defense capabilities are being threatened on two budget fronts: 
first, sequestration with its damaging across-the-board, 
upfront budget cuts, and second, rapidly rising costs within 
the Department's budget, including, but not limited to, health 
care, personnel, and retirement costs.
    Mr. Chairman, members of the committee, I believe that 
Chuck will work effectively with this committee and Congress in 
meeting these budget challenges while protecting our people, 
protecting our capabilities, and also while ensuring that the 
United States has the strongest military in the world.
    Chuck Hagel was a soldier and a Senator, but he has been 
also a highly successful executive in both the public and 
private sectors. He built a successful company from the ground 
up. He is a man who knows how to prioritize, and he knows how 
to make tough decisions. He will listen to and carefully 
consider the views of our military and civilian leaders, and 
guide them as necessary.
    Fifth, I believe that Chuck Hagel will be a balanced and 
responsible voice on nuclear weapons policy. President Reagan 
said it often and said it well: ``a nuclear war cannot be won, 
and it must not be fought.''
    Mr. Chairman, as this committee knows, the risk of a global 
nuclear war has thankfully, substantially declined since the 
breakup of the Soviet Union. But with nine nations possessing 
nuclear weapons, with nuclear weapons usable material and 
knowledge spread across the globe, and with terrorists ready to 
use a nuclear weapon if they manage to buy, steal, or make one, 
we face enormous risk that a nuclear weapon will be used. If 
proliferation continues in countries like Iran and North Korea, 
and if we do not secure nuclear materials and weapons globally, 
the odds of use will go up even more.
    Six years ago George Schultz, Bill Perry, Henry Kissinger, 
and I made the argument that we reduce reliance on nuclear 
weapons as a vital contribution to preventing that 
proliferation, keeping them out of dangerous hands, and 
ultimately ending them as a threat to the world. Two-thirds of 
living former Secretaries of State and Defense, and national 
security advisors have agreed with the vision and the steps 
that we outlined, including substantial work on verification 
and enforcement.
    Mr. Chairman, I hope that all members of the committee and 
the Senate will read the recent statement by four credible and 
very experienced Americans--Ambassador Tom Pickering, 
Ambassador Richard Burt, General James Cartwright, and General 
John Sheehan--about their work with Chuck Hagel on nuclear 
weapons. They made it abundantly clear that they oppose 
unilateral moves. They support bilateral negotiations. They 
support verifiable U.S.-Russian arms reductions to be followed 
by multilateral negotiations, bringing other nuclear weapons 
countries into a serious and verifiable process of reductions.
    In closing, Mr. Chairman, there are many essential 
characteristics and values that a Secretary of Defense should 
possess in our dangerous and challenging world. Let me name 
just two or three that I think are very important.
    First, someone who is well-informed, has an open mind, 
engages in critical thinking, who is capable of and who seeks 
out independent thought. Second, someone who sets aside fixed 
ideologies and biases to honestly evaluate all options, and 
then provides his or her candid judgment to the President and 
to Congress. Third, someone who pays attention to people with 
the best ideas, regardless of their party affiliation. No one 
is perfect. We all know that. But Chuck Hagel comes as close as 
anyone I know to having all of these qualities.
    Mr. Chairman, Senator Inhofe, and members of the committee, 
I served for 24 years on this important committee, and I 
recognize that much has changed since I retired 16 years ago. I 
continue to believe, however, that every major problem we face 
today requires the best input from both political parties if we 
are to arrive at a solution. I believe that Chuck Hagel will 
seek that input. I urge his support by this committee, and I 
urge the confirmation of his nomination by the U.S. Senate.
    I thank the chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Nunn.
    Senator Warner.

 STATEMENT OF HON. JOHN WARNER, U.S. SENATOR FROM THE STATE OF 
                       VIRGINIA, RETIRED

    Senator Warner. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. It is a moving 
experience for me to reenter this room. I served on this 
committee for 30 years. In that period of time, Senator Nunn 
was the chairman, and I was the ranking. But I want to say to 
you and Jim Inhofe--Jim and I have been good friends and we 
worked together not only on this committee, but other 
committees. You will be a splendid ranking member. You follow 
in the steps of my dear and valued friend of so many years, 
John McCain.
    The leadership of this committee throughout my 30 years in 
the Senate has been drawn from the ranks of the strongest and 
the best of its membership. We have it today, and I have every 
reason we will have it tomorrow.
    I would like to say a word to the new members of this 
committee. As I look back over a very fortunate record of 
public service for many years, no chapter of my career was more 
important than service on this committee. You will carry with 
you for the rest of your life the recollections of the work 
that you have done for one of America's most valued assets, the 
men and the women and their families of the armed services of 
the United States.
    I have written out a nice long statement, and then last 
night late I received Sam Nunn's statement and Chuck Hagel's 
statement, and I said that I felt that another statement just 
would not do. I would rather say just a few words from the 
heart about the importance of what we have by way of decision 
before all of us today.
    I thank Senator Nunn for that reference of 68 years ago in 
the Navy. I did no more than every other kid on my block. We 
all went. But I would like to remind you that a half century 
ago, you served in the Coast Guard. So, Grandpa, here is 
another grandpa. [Laughter.]
    Good friends, we thank Chuck Hagel, and Mrs. Hagel, and his 
family because if confirmed, there is an enormous commitment by 
the family to this position. Having known Lilibet and slightly 
your children, you have made that decision to offer yourself 
for continued public service. Public service is a privilege. I 
have always regarded it as such.
    I will not give a long statement. This statement by Senator 
Hagel will soon be shared with you. I read it through not once, 
twice, but again this morning. I say this carefully, I have 
read the statements that have been placed before the members of 
this committee for those 30 years. I have never read a more 
carefully prepared statement, a more forthright statement, and 
one that has no hedges or deviations. He hits firm on those 
issues that will make the decision in your minds and that of 
your colleagues as to whether or not he is qualified to take on 
this very important assignment.
    I first entered the Pentagon in 1969 during the war in 
Vietnam under Melvin Laird. Jim Schlesinger followed, and I 
have worked with every Secretary of Defense since that period 
of time, all different, all with their strengths and indeed 
some of their weaknesses. But set forth in this is a series of 
commitments to you as a committee, to the members of the full 
Senate, and to the American public as precisely what his goals 
are and what he will do, how he will serve the President, how 
he will give the President his best advice. I know Chuck to 
give it very strongly.
    I'm going to talk a little bit about Chuck Hagel, the man 
that I served with for 12 years. My distinguished colleague and 
long-time friend, Sam, had gone when Chuck arrived at the 
Senate. The first year he was here, we had the defense 
authorization bill on the floor. In those days, as it is today, 
that bill goes on that floor, that bill stays on that floor, 
sometimes a couple of days, sometimes a week, sometimes broken 
up, but we get it through. When it's done, we go immediately 
back to our committee spaces and begin to write that bill and 
get it to the printer so that we can go to conference. How many 
times have we done that together, Senator Nunn, Senator Levin, 
Senator McCain, Senator Inhofe, many times.
    The first year he was here, he watched that process, and 
when I had taken the staff back to the committee room, 
surprisingly he showed up. I didn't know him that well, 
although I had studied his biography and I wanted to get to 
know him because of my deep and abiding interesting in the 
Vietnam period, having served for 5 years in that period as 
Under Secretary of the Navy.
    He strolled into the room and I introduced him to the 
people. He said to the staff, you are one of the most 
impressive group of young people I've ever seen. I learned a 
lot. He shared some of histories as a simple, but elegant, 
soldier that he was. That is the way he started, and thereafter 
he voted for every single final passage of the authorization 
bill, every single final passage of the appropriation bill.
    He was at home and learned in that generation of Vietnam, 
and I am so proud to have the affiliation of having been, yes, 
in comparative safety at the Pentagon. But I did go to the 
field of battle and see these young men and some women who 
engaged in that struggle. Chuck Hagel brings with him the 
experience of having come home to an America that was quite 
different than what I experienced when my generation came home 
from World War II. We were welcomed with open arms. America at 
that time in Vietnam, and how well John McCain can remember 
this, was very divided. When you wore your uniform back home, 
it did not receive the same respect that it deserved for the 
sacrifices that you and your colleagues had committed. Chuck 
will never forget that. I will never forget it. John will never 
forget it.
    Today we welcome home and we do it with the fullest heart 
the young men and women who serve, but there have been times in 
history when that didn't happen, and that was one. That honed 
him to be prepared to take on his responsibilities as he 
addresses the declining budget situation, which is going to be 
a challenge. I am absolutely certain that he will stand up and 
fight as hard as two of his predecessors--Leon Panetta you 
mentioned today, and Robert Gates. They gave their President 
loyalty, but they gave him their best advice and tough advice, 
and fought for their troops, and drilled down to what they have 
to maintain whatever budget. Sequester is not the route. But 
whatever budget, he will maintain morale and combat readiness. 
Also, ladies and gentlemen, that pillar of strength of our 
military system, the All-Volunteer Force.
    We had drafts in Vietnam. We saw the effect of that. We 
decided as a Nation to take a gamble, to let every person who 
wished to wear the uniform, giving that opportunity and to 
volunteer. No one is forced in there. That has to be 
maintained. This man has the experience, gravitas, and the 
strength to protect the All-Volunteer Force.
    I also was deeply impressed by the Senate and the manner in 
which it confirmed John Kerry. John Kerry was also in that 
generation, and he served his trials and tribulations, and came 
home and faced that public in the same way Chuck did. The 
Senate confirmed him with a very strong vote. They sent him 
away ready to take on the enormity of his responsibility.
    Now I mention that because in my experience, I have seen a 
good deal of camaraderie, but a good deal of competition 
between the Secretaries of Defense and the Secretaries of 
State. It is just sort of built in there, and sometimes a lot 
of sand gets in that gear box. But it is important to the 
United States that they, having the major jurisdiction over 
most of the policy issues, work as a team.
    John Kerry and Chuck Hagel are a band of brothers out of 
Vietnam with that special bond, and I am sure that you will 
utilize that and remember it, and make those two departments 
performs their functions to best serve the President and to 
best serve the country.
    I have pretty well said everything I should say. I want to 
be brief because it is important that this committee pursue its 
work. But again, Bob Gates, Leon Panetta set the bar for this 
century of those who take on this job. You mentioned your long 
friendships, Chuck, and how you know both. I would keep close 
contact. They have the experience to deal with this President 
of the United States, and you are the President's choice.
    Folks, there is an old saying in the combat Army infantry 
and Marine Corps. ``Certain men are asked to take the point,'' 
which means to get out and lead in the face of the enemy. Chuck 
Hagel did that as a sergeant in Vietnam. If confirmed, Chuck 
Hagel will do it again, this time not before a platoon, but 
before every man and woman and their families in the armed 
services. You will lead them. They will know in their hearts we 
have one of our own.
    You are on your own, and good luck.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you. [Laughter.]
    Chairman Levin. We thank you both, Senator Warner, Senator 
Nunn, for your extraordinarily powerful introductions. I just 
wish every member of the Senate and every American could have 
heard, and I hope will hear and read about what you said here 
today about Chuck Hagel. I also noticed there is another former 
Senator, who was a member of that band of brothers, who is with 
us today. I just noticed in the audience Max Cleland is here, 
and I want to welcome you, Max, too, as an old, old friend of 
this committee, and the Senate, and of the Nation.
    Let me now call on Senator Hagel. Senator Warner, Senator 
Nunn, again, thank you for your introductions, and you are free 
to get back to your lives or to stay as you wish.
    Senator Hagel.

 STATEMENT OF HON. CHARLES T. HAGEL, TO BE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Chairman Levin, Ranking Member 
Inhofe, and distinguished members of the committee. I am 
honored to come before you today as the President's nominee to 
be the Secretary of Defense.
    First, as you suggested, Mr. Chairman, let me introduce my 
family--my wife, Lilibet. Our son Ziller, and our daughter, 
Allyn, are not with us today. Our son, Ziller, claims he's 
taking a test. We will confirm that later. But both are a son 
and daughter that Lilibet and I are very proud of. I think like 
any proud father and any proud mother, you all know how I feel 
about that as you have the same feelings about your children. 
It is the same way Lilibet and I feel about ours.
    I also want to introduce my brother, Tom, who served with 
me in Vietnam, my brother, Mike, who is our number three 
brother, and I might add, who actually possesses any talent our 
family has. He has in the Pentagon 10 paintings as Chairman of 
the Air Force Artist Guild over the years, and they are hanging 
in different locations in the Pentagon. We have one brother of 
some acclaim, and one of us did make it, my brother, Mike. 
Mike's son is sitting behind him, Josh. He is one of three 
children that Mike has.
    We have here also cousins, many friends, and people I owe 
money to. [Laughter.]
    Who knows who else since I have received some publicity 
over the weeks.
    I want to also thank my friends, Sam Nunn and John Warner. 
I want to thank them for their support, their encouragement, 
and their friendship over many years. As each of you who had 
the privilege of serving with those Senators, I, too, add my 
thanks for their tremendous service to our country. These two 
distinguished Americans represent what is best about American 
public service and responsible bipartisanship. They have 
embodied both in their careers, long distinguished careers, and 
are models for each of us.
    Of course to my family and friends, and my fellow veterans 
who are here, as has been noted, Max Cleland, Jan Scruggs, good 
friends, veterans from all wars, who are here today who I 
worked with for many, many years. I am grateful to them. Not 
just to those friends, and supporters, and fellow veterans who 
are here, but those who are not, thank you.
    A life is only as good as the family and the friends you 
have and the people you surround yourself with. I also want to 
thank my friend, Leon Panetta, for his tremendous service to 
our country over so many years. If I am given the privilege of 
succeeding him, it will be a high honor.
    President Obama for his confidence and trust in me, I thank 
him. I am humbled by the opportunity and the possibility he has 
given me to serve our country once again. I fully recognize the 
immense responsibilities of the Secretary of Defense. I assured 
the President that if I am confirmed by the U.S. Senate, I will 
always do my best. I will always do my best for our Nation and 
for the men and women and their families, who are called on to 
make the enormous sacrifices of military service. Their safety, 
success, and welfare will always be at the forefront of the 
decisions I make.
    I also assured the President that I would always provide 
him with my most honest and informed advice. I make that same 
commitment to this committee and to Congress. If confirmed, I 
will reach out to the members of this committee for advice and 
collaboration. It will be a partnership because the national 
security challenges America faces require it.
    Our Nation's security is the highest priority of our 
leaders and our Government. We cannot allow the work of 
confronting the great threats we face today to be held hostage 
to partisanship on either side of the aisle, or by differences 
between the bodies represented in Articles I and II of our 
Constitution. The stakes are too high. Men and women of all 
political philosophies, and parties, and ideas die and fight 
for our country. As this committee knows so well, protecting 
our national security or committing our Nation to war can never 
become political litmus tests.
    I know Secretary Panetta has put a strong emphasis on 
reaching out to Congress. I, like Leon, come from Congress, and 
respect and understand this institution's indispensable role in 
setting policy and helping govern our country.
    We are all products of the forces that shape us. For me, 
there has been nothing more important in my life, or a more 
defining influence on my life, than my family. Whether it was 
helping my mother raise four boys after my father, a World War 
II veteran who died suddenly at age 39 on Christmas Day, or 
serving side by side with my brother Tom in Vietnam, or the 
wonderful miracle of my wife Lilibet and me being blessed with 
two beautiful children. That is who I am.
    We each bring to our responsibilities frames of reference. 
These frames of reference are formed by our life's experiences. 
They help instruct our judgments. We build out from those 
personal foundations by continually informing ourselves, 
listening, and learning.
    Like each of you, I have a record, a record that I am proud 
of. I am proud of my record not because of any accomplishments 
I may have achieved, or certainly because of an absence of 
mistakes, but rather because I have tried to build that record 
by living my life and fulfilling my responsibilities as 
honestly as I knew how and with hard work. Underpinning 
everything I have done in my life was the belief that we must 
always be striving to make our Nation a better and more secure 
place for all of our people.
    During the 12 years I had the privilege of serving the 
people of Nebraska in the U.S. Senate, I cast over 3,000 votes 
and hundreds of committee votes. I have also given hundreds of 
interviews and speeches and written a book. As you all know, I 
am on the record. I am on the record on many issues.
    But no one individual vote, no one individual quote, no one 
individual statement defines me, my beliefs, or my record. My 
overall world view has never changed: that America has and must 
maintain the strongest military in the world, that we must lead 
the international community to confront threats and challenges 
together, and take advantage of opportunities together; that we 
must use all our tools of American power to protect our 
citizens and our interests. I believe, and I always have 
believed, that America must engage in the world, not retreat 
from the world, but engage with the world. My record is 
consistent on these points.
    It is clear that we are living at a defining time. Our 
Nation is emerging from over a decade of war. We have brought 
our men and women in uniform home from Iraq, and have started 
to bring them home from Afghanistan.
    That does not mean that the threats we face and will 
continue to face are any less dangerous or complicated. In 
fact, it is quite the opposite. Recent events in Mali and 
Algeria remind us clearly of this reality. The 21st century 
complexities, technologies, economies, and threats are bringing 
the 7 billion global citizens closer together than ever before. 
As our planet adds another 2 billion people over the next 25 
years, the dangers, complications, and human demands will not 
be lessened, but rather heightened.
    Despite these challenges, I believe we also have historic 
opportunities to help build a safer, more prosperous, more 
secure, more hopeful, and more just world than maybe any time 
in history of man, for all people. Yes, the curse of 
intolerance, hatred, and danger exists around the world, and we 
must continue to be clear-eyed about this danger, and we will 
be. We will not hesitate to use the full force of the U.S. 
military in defense of our security. But we must also be smart, 
and, more importantly, wise, wise in how we employ all of our 
Nation's great power.
    America's continued leadership and strength at home and 
abroad will be critically important for our country and the 
world. While we will not hesitate to act unilaterally when 
necessary, it is essential that we work closely with our allies 
and partners to enhance America's influence and security, as 
well as global security. If confirmed, I will continue to build 
on the efforts of this administration and of former Secretary 
Gates, Secretary Panetta, and Secretary Clinton to strengthen 
our alliances and partnerships around the world. I will also 
look forward to working with my former Senate colleague--your 
colleague--and our friend, John Kerry, in this pursuit.
    As I told the President, I am committed to his positions on 
all issues of national security, specifically decisions that 
DOD is in the process of implementing now. This includes the 
Defense Strategic Guidance the President outlined in January 
2012. Allow me to very briefly address a few of those specific 
issues now.
    First, we have a plan in place to transition out of 
Afghanistan, continue bringing our troops home, and end the 
war, which has been the longest war, as we all know, in 
America's history. As you also know, discussions are ongoing 
about what the U.S. presence in Afghanistan will look like 
after 2014. The President has made clear, and I agree, that 
there should be only two functions for U.S. troops that remain 
in Afghanistan after 2014: counterterrorism, particularly to 
target al Qaeda and its affiliates, training, and advising 
Afghan forces. It is time we forge a new partnership with 
Afghanistan, with its government and, most importantly, with 
its people.
    Second, as the Secretary of Defense, I will ensure we stay 
vigilant and keep up the pressure on terrorist organizations as 
they try to expand their affiliates around the world, in places 
like Yemen, Somalia, and North Africa. At the Pentagon, that 
means continuing to invest in and build the tools to assist in 
that fight, such as Special Operations Forces and new 
intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance technologies. It 
will mean working hand-in-hand with our partners here at home 
across the National Security and Intelligence Communities to 
confront these and other threats, especially the emerging 
threat--the very dangerous and real threat of cyber warfare.
    Third, as I have made clear, I am fully committed to the 
President's goal of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear 
weapon, and I have been on record on that issue. As I have said 
in the past many times, all options must be on the table to 
achieve that goal.
    My policy has always been the same as the President's, one 
of prevention, not of containment. The President has made clear 
that is the policy of our Government. As Secretary of Defense, 
I will make sure the Department is prepared for any 
contingency. That is my job. That is my responsibility. I will 
ensure our friend and ally Israel maintains its qualitative 
military edge in the region, and will continue to support 
systems like Iron Dome, which is today saving Israeli lives 
from terrorist rocket attacks. That support I have always made 
clear and been on the record for.
    Fourth, while we pursue the reductions in our deployed 
stockpiles and launchers consistent with the New Strategic Arms 
Reduction Treaty (START), I am committed to maintaining a 
modern, strong, safe, ready, and effective nuclear arsenal. 
America's nuclear deterrent over the last 35 years has played a 
central role in ensuring global security and the avoidance of 
world war III. I have been committed to that. My record is 
clear on that. I am committed to modernizing our nuclear 
arsenal.
    As we emerge from this decade of war, we must also broaden 
our Nation's focus overseas as we look at future threats and 
challenges. As this committee knows, that is why DOD is 
rebalancing its resources towards the Asia-Pacific region. We 
are in the process of modernizing our defense posture across 
the entire region to defend and deepen our partnerships with 
traditional allies, especially Japan, South Korea, and 
Australia, to continue to deter and defend against provocations 
from states like North Korea, as well as non-state actors, and 
to expand our networks of security cooperation throughout the 
region to combat terrorism, counter proliferation, provide 
disaster relief, fight piracy, and ensure maritime security.
    I will continue this rebalancing even as we continue to 
work closely--closely--with our long-time allies of the North 
Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and our friends, and with 
allies, and partners, and friends in other regions of the 
world. At the same time, we will continue to focus on 
challenges in the Middle East and North Africa where we have 
clear national interests. Rather, it is a recognition that the 
United States has been and always will be a Pacific power, and 
the Asian-Pacific area is increasingly vital to America's 
security and economic interests. That is why we must become 
even more engaged in the region over the coming years.
    Doing all of this and much more will require smart and 
strategic budget decisions. I have made it clear I share Leon 
Panetta's and our Service Chiefs' serious concerns about the 
impact sequestration would have on our Armed Forces. As someone 
who has run businesses, I know that the uncertainty and 
turbulence of the current budget climate makes it much more 
difficult to manage the Pentagon's resources and our national 
security. If confirmed, I am committed to effectively and 
efficiently using every single taxpayer's dollar the right way, 
to maintaining the strongest military in the world, and to 
working with Congress to ensure the Department has the 
resources it needs, and that the disposition of those resources 
is accountable.
    Even as we deal with difficult budget decisions, I will 
never break America's commitment to our troops, our veterans, 
and our military families. We will continue to invest in the 
well-being of our All-Volunteer Force. Working with the 
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and other institutions, we 
will make sure our troops and their families get the health 
care, job opportunities, and education they have earned and 
deserve, just as I did when I co-authored the post-9/11 GI Bill 
with Senators Jim Webb, Frank Lautenberg, and John Warner. This 
includes focusing on the mental health of our fighting force, 
because no one who volunteers to fight and die for this country 
should ever feel like that they have nowhere to turn. That is 
unacceptable in this country.
    In my 12 years in the Senate, my one guiding principle on 
every security decision I made and every vote I cast was always 
this--simply this: Is our policy worthy of our troops and their 
families and the sacrifices that we ask them to make? That same 
question will guide me if I am confirmed as Secretary of 
Defense.
    Our men and women in uniform and their families must never 
doubt that their leaders' first priority is them. I believe my 
record of leadership on veterans issues over the years, going 
back to my service in the Veterans Administration under 
President Reagan, demonstrates my rock-solid commitment to our 
veterans and their families.
    We must always take care of our people. That is why I will 
work to ensure that everyone who volunteers to fight for this 
country has the same rights and same opportunities. As I have 
discussed with many of you in our meetings, I am fully 
committed to implementing the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, 
and doing everything possible under current law to provide 
equal benefits to the families of all our servicemembers and 
their families.
    I will work with the Service Chiefs as we officially open 
combat positions to women, a decision I strongly support. I 
will continue the important work that Leon Panetta has done to 
combat sexual assault in the military. Maintaining the health 
and well-being of those who serve is critical to maintaining a 
strong and capable military, because an institution's people 
must always come first.
    As we look ahead to the coming years, we have an 
extraordinary opportunity now at this moment to define what is 
next for America's military and our country. It is incumbent 
upon all of us to make decisions that will ensure our Nation is 
prepared to confront any threat we may face in the future, 
protect our citizens, and remain the greatest force for good in 
the world.
    If confirmed as Secretary of Defense, it will be my great 
honor, working with the President, this committee, Congress, 
and our military, to ensure our policies are worthy of the 
service and sacrifice of America's men and women.
    Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I look forward to your questions.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Hagel. Here is 
what the plan is now for the hearing. We will have a first 
round of 8 minutes each. We have a vote that is scheduled for 
12:15 p.m. We are going to work through that vote, and we are 
also going to work through lunch, which means that we would ask 
you to vote some time during that 12:15 p.m. vote and come back 
for those of you who have not had your turn yet.
    There are five votes at 2:15 p.m. I hope that we can 
complete our first round by 2 p.m. or 2:15 p.m. so that we 
could then have a late lunch at 2:15 p.m. during those five 
votes. We would then come back perhaps an hour later. We would 
ask those who have not had a turn, if that is the case, or 
during our second round, that to begin our second round that 
you on the final vote, vote early and then come back so we can 
start as quickly as possible around 3:15 p.m. or 3:30 p.m., I 
would assume, to either complete the first round if it has not 
been completed, or to begin our second round.
    Because of the time crunch, we have standard questions 
which we ask of all nominees. I am going to ask those at a 
later time during this hearing, but we will ask them. Again, I 
think that we hope to finish today. We will leave the record 
open for questions. But our goal would be to finish today no 
matter how long it takes today, then to have the record open 
for questions.
    Let us now begin our first round of 8 minutes.
    Senator Hagel, you have made reference to the looming 
sequester. We received a letter signed by the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff relative to sequester which says that we are on the brink 
of creating a hollow force due to an unprecedented convergence 
of budget conditions and legislation. They have talked about 
the readiness crisis which would result: grounding aircraft, 
returning ships to port, stop driving combat vehicles, 
training, and so forth.
    You have spoken very briefly about your agreeing in general 
with the impact. Would you expand on the impact of that 
sequester from your perspective?
    Senator Hagel. Mr. Chairman, I think the Service Chiefs 
have laid it out rather directly, plainly, as Secretary Panetta 
has. As recently as 2 or 3 days ago, the Deputy Secretary of 
Defense, Ash Carter, in an interview went into some detail.
    The fact is, the bottom line if sequester would occur, it 
is not just a reduction in a significant amount of dollars that 
would occur, but it would be a convergence of taking the 
flexibility, the projection, the management, the future, away 
from those who are responsible for managing our budget. 
Furloughing civilian employees would have to occur. You listed 
an inventory of consequences; of cutting back on flying time, 
training, steaming. These are real consequences that would 
occur.
    I know the Pentagon, the Chiefs, those who have 
responsibility for managing every department of this 3 million 
person operation, security institution, are preparing for the 
worst. But make no mistake, this is not an exaggeration. When 
managers are not given the flexibility, and the opportunity, 
and the tools to manage with complete uncertainty as to what is 
ahead, that is disaster.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you. On the question of Iran and the 
use of force, the President has said that Iran's leaders should 
understand that President Obama does not have a policy of 
containment. He has a policy to prevent Iran from obtaining a 
nuclear weapon, that he has made clear that he will not 
hesitate, in his words, to use force when it is necessary to 
defend the United States and its interests. Do you agree with 
President Obama's position that, ``all options should be on the 
table,'' to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon?
    Senator Hagel. I do. I have, and I strongly agree with him.
    Chairman Levin. On Iranian sanctions, President Obama has 
said that the sanctions which have been put in place are 
crippling the economy of Iran. I happen to agree. Their 
currency has dropped 80 percent. Oil production has plunged. 
Their economy is in a shambles. Do you share the President's 
views on the importance and effectiveness of sanctions against 
Iran? If so, how do you reconcile your position with some of 
your past statements that suggest that the national security of 
the United States is not served by isolating Iran?
    Senator Hagel. First, I have always agreed with 
multilateral sanctions because I think they have an effect. I 
think this President, in particular, has probably done more 
than any president to effectively employ those kinds of 
international sanctions starting with a United Nations (U.N.) 
Security Council agreement and U.N. mandates. I agree with what 
the President is doing. I have said publicly, incidentally long 
before the President ever asked me to consider this job, that 
additional sanctions might be required.
    As to my record on votes in the Senate regarding unilateral 
sanctions, I have differed on some of those. I have voted for 
some as well. It was always on a case-by-case basis. When I 
voted against some of those unilateral sanctions on Iran, it 
was a different time. For example, I believe one was in 2001. 
We were at a different place with Iran during that time. Matter 
of fact, I recall the Bush administration did not want a 
renewal of the 5-year renewal of the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act 
(ILSA) during that time because they weren't sure of the 
effectiveness of sanctions.
    That was not the only reason I voted against it. It was 
because I thought that there might be other ways to employ our 
vast ability to harness power and allies. It was never a 
question of did I disagree with the objective. The objective 
was, I think, very clear to both of us.
    I recall, for example, in 2008, Secretary of State 
Condoleeza Rice sending a letter to the Chairman of the Finance 
Committee, Senator Max Baucus, requesting that a sanctions 
resolution unilateral in the Finance Committee not come out of 
the Finance Committee because the Bush administration at the 
time was working with the Russians specifically, but with the 
Security Council of the United Nations to try to get 
international sanctions, which I think that effort, by the way, 
in 2008, led to the 2010 international sanctions.
    Chairman Levin. Can you give us your view on the size of 
the U.S. force which might be necessary or would be necessary 
after 2014, the so-called residual force, if you have an 
opinion on the size? You indicated in your opening statement 
two missions for that residual force.
    Can you also give us your opinion about the size of the 
Afghanistan National Security Force after 2014, and whether you 
agree with me, and Senator Graham on this committee, and others 
that we ought to reconsider the position that the Afghanistan 
National Security Force should be reduced by a third starting 
in 2014 to about 230,000 from what its current goal is, which 
is about 350,000.
    Senator Hagel. As you all know, General Allen has presented 
his options to the President for the President's consideration. 
As far as I know, as of this morning, the President had not 
made a decision on what a residual force, numbers wise, would 
look like. I have not been included in those discussions, so I 
do not know, other than knowing that he has a range of options, 
as you do.
    But I would say that from what the President has told me, 
what Secretary Panetta has told me, that decision will be made 
to assure resourcing the mission and the capability of that 
mission.
    As to what kind of a force structure should eventually be 
in place by the Afghans, I do not know enough about the 
specifics to give you a good answer, other than to say that I 
think that has to be a decision that is made certainly with the 
President of Afghanistan, what we can do to continue to 
support, train, and protect our interests within the scope of 
our ability to do that. Obviously the immunity for our troops 
is an issue, which was an issue in Iraq. All those 
considerations will be important and will be made. If I am 
confirmed and in a position to give the President on that, I 
will with consultation of our commanders on the ground and our 
Service Chiefs giving the best options that we can provide.
    Chairman Levin. Will you review that question of the size 
of the Afghanistan force with an open mind if you are 
confirmed?
    Senator Hagel. I will because I think we have to.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you. Senator Inhofe.
    Senator Inhofe. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, my first question is not to be responded as 
to explaining the position. I want to state the position or 
restate the position on five things that I mentioned in my 
opening statement, and merely to ask you if these are accurate 
reflections of things that happened in the past.
    The first one is in 2007, you voted against the designating 
of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp as a terrorist 
organization. The second thing in 2006, you were 1 of 12 
Senators who refused to petition the European Union (EU) to 
identify Hezbollah as a terrorist group. Third, in November 
2003, you failed to vote on a Syria accountability act 
authorizing sanctions on Syria for its support of terrorism and 
occupation of Lebanon. Fourth, in 2001, you were one of only 
two Senators that year to vote against renewal of the Iran-
Libya Sanctions Act. Lastly, in 2001, you were one of four 
Senators who refused to sign the letter supporting Israel. Are 
those accurate?
    Senator Hagel. Let's start with the----
    Senator Inhofe. No, I just want to know if these are votes 
that took place. Do you agree that those votes took place?
    Senator Hagel. I want to ask about the letter that you just 
noted in your fifth point, what was the date in the letter?
    Senator Inhofe. The date?
    Senator Hagel. You said I refused to sign a letter.
    Senator Inhofe. It was October 2001.
    Senator Hagel. A letter to----
    Senator Inhofe. Okay, skip that one. Are the other ones 
true? [Laughter.]
    Senator Hagel. It is very important, Senator, that we----
    Senator Inhofe. It is very important because I was holding 
the letter at the time that we were gathering signatures.
    Senator Hagel. I see. On the 2008 question regarding 
designating the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist 
organization, I did vote against it.
    Senator Inhofe. I am sorry, and I do not want to be rude. 
You and I are very good friends, but I know that my time is 
going to expire. Others are going to ask you why you did this. 
I was asking for the accuracy, and you do not want to answer 
that, that is fine.
    Senator Hagel. No, I just said I did vote against it, and I 
was going to explain why I voted against it.
    Senator Inhofe. I know, and they will be asking you for 
your explanation. I want to get to three other things, and that 
is why it is critical that we keep moving along here.
    One of the criticisms I have had of this administration is 
the lack of priority and funding for the military. While they 
have increased the deficit by $5.3 trillion in 4 years, the 
only major part of the budget that has decreased has been the 
military.
    Now, that is something that is pretty well known. A lot of 
people do not like that idea. The thing that bothers me just as 
much is putting another agenda under the military budget. For 
example, you have heard Senator McCain, and me, and others talk 
about the fact that the Navy paid for 450,000 gallons of fuel, 
some $26 a gallon that you can get on the market for $3. The 
Air Force, the same thing, except that it is $59 a gallon.
    The question I would have of you is just a commitment that 
if you are confirmed, will you confine the dollars that we are 
going to spend in the defense budget for defense purposes, for 
warfighting purposes?
    Senator Hagel. Of course I will because that is the intent 
of our budget and DOD.
    Senator Inhofe. Good. I appreciate that very much. There 
was an article the other day in the Washington Post by Jennifer 
Rubin called ``Our Dimwitted State Department''. It was kind of 
an interesting article. There are four questions that I am 
going to ask that you respond for the record. For people who do 
not know what that is, that means later on in writing.
    The questions that I liked that she asked were, did the 
sale of the F-16s encourage Mohamed Morsi to crack down on his 
people? Number two, had we known he would crack, would we still 
have sent the weaponry? Number three, how will we respond to 
Morsi's anti-democratic moves and the rise in violence against 
Christians in Egypt, or, as will likely be the case, a failure 
to live up to Egypt's security obligations regarding Gaza? 
Four, have we miscalculated the Muslim Brotherhood? That would 
be for the record.
    [The information referred to follows:]

    Question. Did the sale of the F-16s encourage Morsi to crack down 
on his people?
    Answer. I do not believe that there is a correlation between the 
sale of F-16s and the recent violence in Egypt. The F-16 aircraft has 
been a key component of the U.S. defense relationship with the Egyptian 
Armed Forces (EAF) for the last 30 years. The EAF have been a reliable 
partner during Egypt's transition, and provided security to reinforce 
Egyptian Ministry of Interior forces during elections and when called 
upon by President Morsi during the recent protests in the Suez Canal 
governorates. I believe it is in U.S. interests to maintain our defense 
relationship with Egypt. Working together to maintain the U.S.-Egypt 
defense relationship is also in the interest of Israel. It is critical 
that the U.S. Government continues to assist with the 
professionalization and the building of EAF capabilities to enable 
border security, participate in regional missions, and continue Egypt's 
role as a pillar of regional stability.
    Question. Had we known he would crack down, would we still have 
sent the weaponry?
    Answer. I cannot speak for the administration, but as I stated, I 
do not believe that there is a direct linkage between the sale of F-16s 
and the recent unrest in Egypt. I join U.S. and foreign leaders in 
condemning the recent violence. It is clear that a large number of 
Egyptian citizens are frustrated with the direction and pace of 
political and economic reform. It is critical that all stakeholders, 
government and opposition, work to address their frustrations and 
concerns peacefully and through dialogue.
    Question. How will we respond to Morsi's anti-democratic moves and 
the rise in violence against Christians in Egypt, or as will likely be 
the case, a failure to live up to Egypt's security obligations 
regarding Gaza?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will take every opportunity to call for a 
transparent, inclusive political process grounded in universal rights, 
the rule of law, and respect for the rights of women and religious 
minorities. The United States maintains the ability to halt assistance 
to Egypt if it is determined that there are major reversals in Egypt's 
democratic transition, a severe degradation in the rule of law, or 
changes in Egypt's foreign or military policy that directly threaten 
U.S. interests, including any changes to the Treaty of Peace with 
Israel.
    I will also be clear with Egyptian leaders that Sinai security 
remains a serious concern, which poses risk to Egypt's internal 
stability as well as the security of Egypt's neighbor Israel. Restoring 
Sinai security requires consistent action against violent groups acting 
in the Sinai and weapons smuggling into Gaza. If confirmed, I will look 
for opportunities to provide U.S. security assistance through training 
and border security equipment to assist Egypt in addressing this shared 
security objective, as well as consistently engage senior Egyptian 
leaders on Sinai security.
    Question. Have we miscalculated the Muslim Brotherhood?
    Answer. No. We are clear-eyed about the Egyptian leadership; the 
fact is that the Freedom and Justice Party--the political arm of the 
Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood--won a majority of votes in Egypt's 
presidential elections. President Morsi has publicly committed to 
upholding Egypt's international obligations, including the Peace Treaty 
with Israel. We need to hold him to these commitments, as he attempts 
to lead Egypt's political transition and democratic consolidation, 
address Egypt's rapidly deteriorating economy, and develop sustainable 
civil-military relations. President Morsi, as the democratically 
elected leader of Egypt, has a special responsibility to build national 
consensus and strengthen Egypt's democracy. In my view, U.S. support 
through economic and security assistance, as well as consistent 
engagement, is critical so that Egypt will continue to serve as a 
pillar of regional stability and peace.
    Question. Do you support a third site of ground-based interceptor? 
It would be on the east coast somewhere.
    Answer. If confirmed, I will work to ensure that the analysis 
Congress requested in section 221 of the National Defense Authorization 
Act for Fiscal Year 2013 to evaluate additional missile defense 
locations in the United States, including on the east coast, will be 
delivered on a timely basis, and that Congress remains informed about 
the Department's analysis about how to best protect the U.S. Homeland.

    Senator Inhofe. In the area of the Global Zero policy, you 
and I talked about that in my office. Others have talked about 
it. We are very much concerned.
    When I heard Senator Warner and others talk about what used 
to be the case, the problem, in terms of nuclear capability, we 
used to be talking about Russia and the United States. It is 
not true anymore. Our intelligence has told us since 2007 that 
Iran will have that nuclear capability and a delivery system by 
2015, so it is other countries that are involved in that.
    The question I would ask you, in your book you wrote that, 
``We must once again convince the world that America has a 
clear intention of fulfilling the nuclear disarmament 
commitments that we have made.'' Then a bit more recently you 
said, ``I believe that providing necessary resources for 
nuclear modernization of the triads should be a national 
priority.'' Do you stand by your last statement?
    Senator Hagel. My last statement was----
    Senator Inhofe. Your last statement is saying that, ``I 
believe that providing the necessary resources for nuclear 
modernization of the triads should be a national priority.''
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely it should be, and I agree with 
that. That is what the policy of this administration is.
    Senator Inhofe. I am merely bringing out the inconsistency 
because when you were involved with supporting the Global Zero 
or whatever the organization was, their declaration is, ``We, 
the undersigned believe that to protect our children, our 
grandchildren, our civilization from the threat of nuclear 
catastrophe, we must eliminate all nuclear weapons globally. 
We, therefore, commit to working for a legally binding 
verifiable agreement, including all nations, to eliminate 
nuclear weapons by a date certain.''
    Senator Hagel. The position of Global Zero, my position, 
some of the individuals--national security leaders, as Senator 
Nunn talked about, including himself, has never been unilateral 
disarmament, ever. Never. We have over the years, which I have 
supported, the United States has led the efforts to reducing 
nuclear warheads. There was no more significant voice for that 
than Ronald Reagan when he laid before Secretary General 
Gorbachev in 1986 a rather bold plan. In fact, I believe, 
paraphrasing President Reagan, we must eliminate nuclear 
warheads from the face of the planet. I believe he said 
something to that effect.
    Global Zero has been very clear on this. Their effort is in 
line with every major national leader in the world, including 
President Obama, to continue to try to make an effort to reduce 
our nuclear warheads. But in a dangerous world, nuclear 
arsenals and our containment policy, which I mentioned in my 
statement, has been critically important. We are not going to 
unilaterally disarm. Verifiable. It has to be bilateral. It has 
to be negotiated, as all our treaties have been.
    Senator Inhofe. Thank you, Senator Hagel, but the reason I 
mentioned the mission statement is that is the group that you 
belong to. We can talk about that later. You may want to expand 
on that for the record.
    My time has expired, but I have one last question I would 
like to ask, and that is, given that Iran--``The people''--and 
I am quoting right now--``from Iran, people of the Middle East, 
the Muslim region, and North Africa, people of these regions 
hate America from the bottom of their heart.'' It further said, 
``Israel is a cancerous tumor in the heart of the Islamist 
world.'' It further said, ``Iran's warriors are ready and 
willing to wipe Israel off the map.''
    The question I would like to ask you, and you can answer 
for the record if you would like, is, why do you think that the 
Iranian foreign ministry so strongly supports your nomination 
to be the Secretary of Defense?
    Senator Hagel. I have a difficult enough time with American 
politics. Senator, I have no idea. But thank you, and I will be 
glad to respond further for the record.
    [The information referred to follows:]

    Question. The question I would like to ask you, and you can answer 
for the record if you would like, is, why do you think that the Iranian 
foreign ministry so strongly supports your nomination to be the 
Secretary of Defense?
    Answer. While I cannot speak to the motivations of the Iranian 
Foreign Ministry spokesperson behind making those statements, there 
should be no doubt that I fully support and--if confirmed--will 
faithfully execute the President's multi-vector strategy towards Iran. 
This strategy has included tough-minded diplomacy, crippling sanctions, 
and serious contingency planning with the objective of preventing Iran 
from acquiring a nuclear weapon.

    Senator Inhofe. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Inhofe.
    Senator Reed.
    Senator Reed. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
    First, I would ask unanimous consent that several letters 
of support, including one from 13 former Secretaries of 
Defense, Secretaries of State, and National Security advisors, 
strongly endorsing Senator Hagel's nomination, be placed in the 
record.
    Chairman Levin. It will be placed in the record.
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    Senator Reed. Mr. Chairman, I think the President chose 
wisely. There are very few people in this country with the 
experience, as a combat infantryman, decorated and wounded, as 
a business leader, as the second leader of the Veterans 
Administration, as a U.S. Senator, as someone who every day 
understands that the decisions we make will be carried out by 
young Americans, actually looked in the face of young 
Americans, who has seen them suffer and die for this country. I 
think that quality is, if not unique, extraordinarily part of 
the nominee before us. Again, I think the President made a wise 
choice.
    I think Senator Inhofe's discussions of the Global Zero 
Report is an opportunity for a quote, and let me quote. ``There 
is one way safely and legitimately to reduce the cost of 
national security, and that is to reduce the need for it. This 
is what we are trying to do in negotiations with the Soviet 
Union. We are not just assessing limits on a further increase 
of nuclear weapons. We seek instead to reduce the number. We 
seek the total elimination one day of nuclear weapons from the 
face of the Earth.'' President Ronald Reagan in his second 
inaugural address.
    The notion of Global Zero is not something unique. I would 
also point out that as signatories to the nuclear disarmament 
treaty, the Nonproliferation Treaty, Article 6 undertakes to 
commit at least to a treaty ultimately on general and complete 
disarmament under strict and effective control.
    This is an aspiration that the United States has embraced 
for a very long time under presidents of both parties. I think, 
as Senator Hagel pointed out, this is not unilateral 
disarmament. This is a long process of making sure we have the 
nuclear weapons in place to deal with appropriate challenges, 
some of them very different than the Cold War, but the 
aspiration is important. It has been a bipartisan and constant 
one for decades. Is that a rough summary of what you might 
agree to, Senator?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, it is, Senator. Thank you.
    Senator Reed. The other issue is that there were several 
specific points raised with your record, and let me give you 
the opportunity to respond, if you will, to the questions that 
Senator Inhofe posed with respect to votes. If you have the 
list before you or----
    Senator Hagel. The what? I'm sorry?
    Senator Reed. Senator Inhofe posed several issues about a 
2007 vote, a 2006 resolution with Hezbollah, 2003 Syrian 
sanctions, et cetera. You were prepared to comment. I think it 
is appropriate that you have an opportunity to comment. If you 
want to do so now, I would invite you to do so.
    Senator Hagel. I would be glad to further comment for the 
record because I have none of those specific quotes in front of 
me, and which I will, Senator, listing every vote I took.
    I would say, though, included in those votes, which I do 
recall some of them, was a vote in 1998, a vote in 2000, a vote 
in 2006, specifically against Iran, sanctioning companies, 
unilateral sanctions, that in any way assisted in Iran's 
building their capability of nuclear weapons or rocket or 
missiles. I voted for those.
    I recall signing a letter, a Warner-Levin letter in 2002 to 
the President of the United States regarding anti-Semitism in 
Russia. I wrote a letter to President Clinton specifically in 
1999 recommending to President Clinton a number of steps that 
he take with President Yeltsin regarding anti-Semitism in 
Russia. I remember specifically there were two unanimous 
consent resolutions in 2006 against Hezbollah, against Hamas, 
against Syria, and Iran that we had unanimous consent, I 
supported on the floor of the Senate.
    So there is a more complete record, Senator, than just one, 
or two, or three, or four, and those are some of them that I 
recall. As I noted in one of the responses back to Senator 
Inhofe, I did not take any action on any vote, as I suspect 
every colleague has the same way to approach votes, on this 
specific issue, on Hezbollah, Hamas, which I am on the record 
many times designating and saying that Hezbollah and Hamas are 
terrorist organizations. I am on the record many times in 
speeches, and on the floor of the Senate, and in the book I 
wrote in 2008 saying that Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism. 
That is not new. That is in my record.
    But the way I approached every vote I ever took in the 
Senate was based on what I thought could be most effective, 
what was the situation at the time, how could we do this 
smarter and better. I have always believed that the President 
of the United States is the elected leader of America. He has 
within his responsibilities, and I believe it is clearly 
articulated in Article 2, to conduct foreign policy. I always 
thought the best way to deal with foreign leaders was let the 
President do that directly, for us to communicate with the 
President.
    I do not think there was a letter that I can recall I 
signed to a President on any of these issues that I agreed with 
it that I did not sign. So it was never a matter of differing 
objectives here. It was a matter of how best we could do it.
    I mentioned in 2008, the Secretary of State did not want 
one of those unilateral sanctions to go forward during the Bush 
administration, wrote a letter, 2001, which is one of the 
issues that Senator Inhofe brought up. The Bush administration 
was opposed to a 5-year renewal of ILSA.
    Now, I am not saying that is right or wrong, but every one 
of the decisions I made, every vote I cast, was based on at the 
time what I thought made the most sense.
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    Senator Reed. Senator, you have clearly stated that you are 
supportive of the President's efforts to support the State of 
Israel. You have indicated specifically the example of Iron 
Dome. I recall a statement recently by Defense Minister Barak 
that he has seldom seen or never has seen the same level of 
military support to the State of Israel that he has seen in the 
last several years.
    You are, I presume and I hope, fully prepared to carry out 
that same effort, that same level of support, because of the 
vital interests that we share with the State of Israel.
    Senator Hagel. I am, and I have a record on that. In my 
book in 2008, interviews, speeches, I have always said I am a 
supporter of Israel. In some cases, I have said I am a strong 
supporter of Israel. In some cases I have even written, and I 
think it is in my book, that we have a special relationship 
with Israel. We always have had.
    I have never voted against Israel ever in the 12 years I 
was in the Senate whether it was military authorizations, 
additional supplemental appropriations. The record is very 
clear on that.
    I might add, as long as we are on this subject, that--and 
Senator Nelson may have a clearer view of this since he was 
just in Jerusalem, there have been a couple of recent 
statements made by the current Israeli Ambassador to the United 
States, the former Israeli Ambassador to the United States, now 
the Deputy Foreign Minister of Israel, that were fairly 
positive about me.
    I think all the Israeli leaders I have dealt with over the 
years and met, I have been to Israel many times. The first two 
times I was in Israel was when I was the head of the United 
Services Organizations (USO). I kept the Haifa USO open. We did 
not close it. There was a lot of pressure when I took over the 
World USO to close USOs around the world, and we did. There was 
a lot of pressure to close the Haifa USO. I am the one that 
made the decision not to do that.
    The former Chief of Naval Operations of Israel, Admiral Zev 
Almad, who has recently been interviewed about me, has strongly 
supported me and said specifically that I was a strong friend 
of Israel. Now the USO is closed, but the current then director 
of the USO, a lady by the name of Gila Garrison, who lives in 
Haifa, said I was a strong supporter and friend of Israel.
    I think my record is pretty clear on my support of Israel, 
and I would, of course, continue to support the President's 
policies. I think he has been as strong a supporter of Israel 
as maybe any President since 1948 when Harry Truman helped give 
birth to Israel. This President has been there. As he said, I 
have Israel's back--$3.1 billion in assistance, almost $300 
additional million out of the Defense Department for Iron Dome, 
what we are doing with David Sling Arrow. I am a strong 
supporter of all those programs and will continue to support 
them.
    Senator Reed. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you. Before I call on Senator McCain, 
there is a quorum that is now present, and I now ask the 
committee to consider a list of 952 pending military 
nominations. They have all been before the committee the 
required length of time.
    Is there a motion to favorably report those nominations?
    Unidentified Speaker. I so move.
    Chairman Levin. Is there a second?
    Unidentified Speaker. Second.
    Chairman Levin. All in favor, say aye? [A chorus of ayes.]
    Opposed, any? [No response.]
    The motion carries. Thank you all very much.
    [The list of nominations considered and approved by the 
committee follows:]
 Military Nominations Pending with the Senate Armed Services Committee 
  which are Proposed for the Committee's Consideration on January 31, 
                                 2013.
    1. MG William H. Etter, ANG to be lieutenant general and Commander, 
First Air Force (Air Force North) and Commander, Continental U.S. North 
American Aerospace Defense Command Region (Reference No. 53)
    2. MG Kenneth E. Tovo, USA to be lieutenant general and Commander, 
Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan/Commander, North 
Atlantic Treaty Organization Training Mission-Afghanistan (Reference 
No. 59)
    3. Col. Barbara R. Holcomb, USA to be brigadier general (Reference 
No. 62).
    4. Col. Patrick D. Sargent, USA to be brigadier general (Reference 
No. 63).
    5. In the Army there are two appointments to the grade of major 
general (list begins with Brian C. Lein) (Reference No. 64).
    6. In the Air Force there is one appointment to the grade of major 
(Kory D. Bingham) (Reference No. 70).
    7. In the Air Force Reserve there are three appointments to the 
grade of colonel (list begins with Michael A. Cooper) (Reference No. 
71).
    8. In the Air Force Reserve there are four appointments to the 
grade of colonel (list begins with Victor Douglas Brown) (Reference No. 
72).
    9. In the Air Force Reserve there are four appointments to the 
grade of colonel (list begins with Walter S. Adams) (Reference No. 73).
    10. In the Air Force Reserve there are six appointments to the 
grade of colonel (list begins with John J. Bartrum) (Reference No. 74).
    11. In the Air Force Reserve there are eight appointments to the 
grade of colonel (list begins with Kimberly L. Barber) (Reference No. 
75).
    12. In the Air Force Reserve there are 11 appointments to the grade 
of colonel (list begins with Dina L. Bernstein) (Reference No. 76).
    13. In the Air Force Reserve there are 12 appointments to the grade 
of colonel (list begins with Timothy Lee Brininger) (Reference No. 77).
    14. In the Air Force Reserve there are 198 appointments to the 
grade of colonel (list begins with Francis Xavier Altieri) (Reference 
No. 78).
    15. In the Army there is one appointment to the grade of lieutenant 
colonel (Jonathan A. Foskey) (Reference No. 79).
    16. In the Army Reserve there is one appointment to the grade of 
colonel (Marion J. Parks) (Reference No. 80).
    17. In the Army Reserve there is one appointment to the grade of 
colonel (Karen A. Pike) (Reference No. 81).
    18. In the Army there are two appointments to the grade of major 
(list begins with Derek S. Reynolds) (Reference No. 82).
    19. In the Army there are two appointments to the grade of major 
(list begins with Edward A. Figueroa) (Reference No. 83).
    20. In the Army Reserve there are two appointments to the grade of 
colonel (list begins with Jack C. Mason) (Reference No. 84).
    21. In the Army Reserve there are 79 appointments to the grade of 
colonel (list begins with Ruth E. Aponte) (Reference No. 85).
    22. In the Army there are 88 appointments to the grade of major 
(list begins with Leslie E. Akins) (Reference No. 86).
    23. In the Army Reserve there are 217 appointments to the grade of 
colonel (list begins with Timothy G. Abrell) (Reference No. 87).
    24. In the Army Reserve there are 225 appointments to the grade of 
colonel (list begins with Rafael E. Abreu) (Reference No. 88).
    25. In the Marine Corps there is one appointment to the grade of 
major (Jackie W. Morgan, Jr.) (Reference No. 91).
    26. In the Marine Corps there is one appointment to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (Dana R. Fike) (Reference No. 92).
    27. In the Marine Corps there is one appointment to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (Samuel W. Spencer III) (Reference No. 93).
    28. In the Marine Corps there is one appointment to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (Larry Miyamoto) (Reference No. 94).
    29. In the Marine Corps there are two appointments to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (list begins with George L. Roberts) (Reference No. 
97).
    30. In the Marine Corps there are two appointments to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (list begins with Richard D. Kohler) (Reference No. 
98).
    31. In the Marine Corps there are two appointments to the grade of 
major (list begins with Eric T. Cline) (Reference No. 100).
    32. In the Marine Corps there are two appointments to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (list begins with Jose L. Sada) (Reference No. 101).
    33. In the Marine Corps there are three appointments to the grade 
of major (list begins with Frederick L. Hunt) (Reference No. 102).
    34. In the Marine Corps there are three appointments to the grade 
of major (list begins with Todd E. Lotspeich) (Reference No. 103).
    35. In the Marine Corps there are three appointments to the grade 
of lieutenant colonel (list begins with Jason B. Davis) (Reference No. 
104).
    36. In the Marine Corps there are three appointments to the grade 
of lieutenant colonel (list begins with Travis M. Fulton) (Reference 
No. 105).
    37. In the Marine Corps there are four appointments to the grade of 
lieutenant colonel (list begins with Bryan Delgado) (Reference No. 
106).
    38. In the Marine Corps there are two appointments to the grade of 
major (list begins with David B. Blann) (Reference No. 107).
    39. In the Marine Corps there are five appointments to the grade of 
major (list begins with Michael Gasperini) (Reference No. 108).
    40. In the Marine Corps there are six appointments to the grade of 
major (list begins with Stephen R. Byrnes) (Reference No. 109).
    41. In the Marine Corps there are seven appointments to the grade 
of major (list begins with Peter K. Basabe, Jr.) (Reference No. 110).
    42. In the Navy there is one appointment to the grade of commander 
(Harry E. Hayes) (Reference No. 115).
    43. In the Navy there is one appointment to the grade of lieutenant 
commander (Shemeya L. Grant) (Reference No. 116).
    44. In the Navy there are two appointments to the grade of 
commander and below (list begins with Christopher J. Kaine) (Reference 
No. 117).
    45. In the Navy there are 29 appointments to the grade of 
lieutenant commander (list begins with Jeanine F. Benjamin) (Reference 
No. 118).
    Total: 952.

    Chairman Levin. Senator McCain.
    Senator McCain. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I am pleased to 
see an old friend here before the committee, and especially 
pleased to see Senator Warner and Senator Nunn, two of the 
great members of this committee, who have contributed so much 
to our Nation's defense.
    Senator Hagel, members of this committee will raise 
questions reflecting concerns with your policy positions. They 
are not reasonable people disagreeing. They have fundamental 
disagreements. Our concerns pertain to the quality of your 
professional judgment and your world view on critical areas of 
national security, including security in the Middle East.
    With that in mind, let me begin with your opposition to the 
surge in Iraq. In 2006, Republicans lost the election, and we 
began the surge, and you wrote a piece in the Washington Post 
called ``Leaving Iraq Honorably''. In 2007, you said it is not 
in the national interests to deepen its military involvement. 
In January 2007, in a rather bizarre exchange with Secretary 
Rice in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee after some 
nonsense about Syria and crossing the border into Iran and 
Syria because of Syria, and a reference to Cambodia in 1970, 
you said, ``When you set in motion the kind of policy the 
President is talking about here, it's very, very dangerous. 
Matter of fact, I have to say, Madam Secretary, I think the 
speech given last night by this President represents the most 
dangerous foreign policy blunder in this country since Vietnam. 
If it is carried out, I will resist it.'' Then of course you 
continued on and on for months afterwards talking about what a 
disaster the surge would be, even to the point where it was 
clear the surge was succeeding.
    In March 2008, you said, ``Here the term quagmire could 
apply. Some reject that term, but if that is not a quagmire, 
then what is?'' Even as late as August 29, 2011, in an 
interview with the Financial Times, you said, ``I disagreed 
with President Obama, his decision to surge in Afghanistan as I 
did with President Bush on the surge in Iraq.''
    Do you stand by those comments, Senator Hagel?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, I stand by them because I made 
them.
    Senator McCain. Were you right? Were you correct in your 
assessment?
    Senator Hagel. I would defer to the judgment of history to 
support that out.
    Senator McCain. The committee deserves your judgment as to 
whether you were right or wrong about the surge.
    Senator Hagel. I will explain why I made those comments.
    Senator McCain. I want to know if you were right or wrong. 
That is a direct question. I expect a direct answer.
    Senator Hagel. The surge assisted in the objective. But if 
we review the record a little bit----
    Senator McCain. Will you please answer the question? Were 
you correct or incorrect when you said that ``The surge would 
be the most dangerous foreign policy blunder in this country 
since Vietnam.'' Where you correct or incorrect, yes or no?
    Senator Hagel. My reference to the surge being the most 
dangerous----
    Senator McCain. Are you going to answer the question, 
Senator Hagel? The question is, were you right or wrong? That 
is a pretty straightforward question. I would like an answer 
whether you were right or wrong, and then you are free to 
elaborate.
    Senator Hagel. I am not going to give you a yes or no 
answer on a lot of things today.
    Senator McCain. Let the record show that you refuse to 
answer that question. Now, please go ahead.
    Senator Hagel. If you would like me to explain why----
    Senator McCain. I actually would like an answer, yes or no.
    Senator Hagel. I am not going to give you a yes or no. I 
think it is far more complicated that, as I have already said. 
My answer is, I will defer that judgment to history.
    As to the comment I made about the most dangerous foreign 
policy decision since Vietnam was about not just the surge, but 
the overall war of choice going into Iraq. That particular 
decision that was made on the surge, but more to the point, our 
war in Iraq, I think was the most fundamental bad, dangerous 
decision since Vietnam.
    Aside from the cost that occurred in this country through 
blood and treasure, aside what that did to take our focus off 
of Afghanistan, which, in fact, was the original and real focus 
of a national threat to this country, Iraq was not. I always 
tried to frame all the different issues before I made a 
decision on anything.
    Now, just as you said, Senator, we can have differences of 
opinion, but that is essentially why I took the position I did.
    Senator McCain. It is a fundamental difference of opinion, 
Senator Hagel. Senator Graham and I, and Senator Lieberman, 
when there were 59 votes in the U.S. Senate, spent our time 
trying to prevent that 60th. Thank God for Senator Lieberman. I 
think history has already made a judgment about the surge, sir, 
and you are on the wrong side of it. Your refusal to answer 
whether you were right or wrong about it is going to have an 
impact on my judgment as to whether to vote for your 
confirmation or not. I hope you will reconsider the fact that 
you refuse to answer a fundamental question about an issue that 
took the lives of thousands of young Americans.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, there was more to it than 
flooding----
    Senator McCain. I am asking about the surge, Senator Hagel.
    Senator Hagel. I know you are, and I am trying to explain 
my position. The beginning of the surge also factored in what 
General Allen had put into place in Anbar Province, the Sunni 
Awakening. We put over 100,000 young soldiers----
    Senator McCain. Senator Hagel, I am very well aware of the 
history of the surge and the Anbar Awakening, and I also am 
aware that any casual observer will know that the surge was the 
fundamental factor, led by two great leaders, General Petraeus 
and Ambassador----
    Senator Hagel. Well, I do not know if that would have been 
required and cost us over 1,000 American lives and thousands of 
wounded.
    Senator McCain. So you do not know if the surge would have 
been required. Okay.
    Senator Hagel, let me go to Syria now. More than 60,000 
people have been killed in Syria. Do you believe that we should 
be more engaged in Syria?
    Senator Hagel. I know this administration is very engaged 
in working with its partners.
    Senator McCain. So you do not think we should do more?
    Senator Hagel. When you say ``do more,'' do you mean----
    Senator McCain. Do you think we should make sure that the 
Syrians get the weapons they need, and perhaps establish a no 
fly zone? Do you think we do?
    Senator Hagel. I believe that part of our review is looking 
at those options.
    Senator McCain. It has been 22 months, Senator Hagel.
    Senator Hagel. I was not there. I do not know the details. 
I am not there now.
    Senator McCain. I am sure you have read in the newspapers 
that 60,000 people have been killed, and that it is in danger 
of spilling over into neighboring countries. My question, I 
guess, is how many more would have to die before you would 
support arming the resistance and establishing a no fly zone?
    Senator Hagel. I do not think anyone questions the terrible 
tragedy that is occurring there every day. It is a matter of 
how best do we work our way through this so that we can stop it 
to begin with, and then what comes next. I think the 
President----
    Senator McCain. Did you disagree with President Obama on 
his decision for the surge in Afghanistan?
    Senator Hagel. I did not think we should get ourselves 
into--first of all, I had no regional position as far as no 
formal position. But I did not think we were----
    Senator McCain. But you were reported on August 29, 2011 
saying, ``I disagreed with President Obama and his decision to 
surge in Afghanistan.''
    Senator Hagel. That was my personal opinion, yes.
    Senator McCain. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator McCain.
    Senator Nelson.
    Senator Nelson. Since the issue of Iraq has come up here, I 
just want to state for the record and lay the predicate that 
this Senator was one of many that voted for the authorization 
to go into Iraq, and as it turns out, the lessons of history, 
we were given incorrect information as a justification for 
going into Iraq.
    We were told by the Secretary of Defense, by the Secretary 
of State, by the National Security advisor, and the Director of 
the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) that there were weapons 
of mass destruction in Iraq. So for a lot of the decisions that 
were made at the outset, they were decisions that were informed 
with incorrect information. As the committee is judging Senator 
Hagel on that decision as well as others, I want to tell the 
committee what was this experience of this Senator.
    Now, what I would like to do with my time here is that 
since there are a few of this in this room that served in the 
military during the Vietnam era, and you clearly had that 
experience in combat, Senator Hagel, I would--and by the way, a 
lot of people do not know anything about Vietnam, and do not 
know how difficult it was, as Senator Warner has so eloquently 
stated in his comments, how the Nation was divided.
    But I would like for you, as the committee is getting to 
know you, to know something about your service in Vietnam, and 
your combat experience. Were you wounded, Senator Hagel?
    Senator Hagel. Senator Nelson, thank you. If I may, and if 
I read into your question some latitude in answering, I would 
respond this way. I think my time is better served to maybe 
talk about more of the specific things, like Senator McCain 
asked me about and some others. Maybe weave some of my 
experience as to how it formed my judgment, rather than going 
through a 12-month journal of my time in the jungles when my 
brother, Tom, and I were both wounded twice together.
    When Tom and I served there, 1968 was the worst year we 
had. Those who may not recall that year, we sent over 16,000 
dead Americans home. Now, that is unfathomable in the world 
that we live in today, 16,000 dead Americans. I saw that from 
the bottom.
    I think Chairman Levin, in an accurate and appropriate 
quote about what I said, in his introductory statements about 
what formed me, and it directly goes to Senator McCain's 
question about the surge. Just as I said in my statement, I had 
one fundamental question that I asked myself on every vote I 
took, every decision I made. Was the policy worthy of the men 
and women that we were sending into battle and surely to their 
deaths? In many cases, unfortunately tens of thousands of cases 
that we are living with, these poor families are living with, 
wounded, the results, the consequences.
    I know it is easy here--it is anywhere--if you do not have 
a connection to some of this to see these things a little 
differently. It does not mean I am any better, Senator. It does 
not mean I am any smarter. It does not mean I am any more 
appreciative of the service of our country. That is not it. I 
saw it from the bottom. I saw what happens. I saw the 
consequences and the suffering when we are at war.
    So I did question a surge. It was not an aberration to me 
ever. I always ask the question, is this going to be worth the 
sacrifice, because there will be sacrifice. In the surge case 
in Iraq, we lost almost 1,200 dead Americans during that surge 
and thousands of wounded. Now, was it required? Was it 
necessary? Senator McCain has his opinion on that shared by 
others. I am not sure. I am not that certain that it was 
required. Now it does not mean I am right. It does not mean I 
did not make wrong votes. But that is what guides me.
    You asked me the question about my time in Vietnam and was 
I wounded. I was a very insignificant part of this. We were 
just doing our job, Senator, as every military person knows 
that. Some of this committee has rather distinguished members 
who served, starting with Senator McCain, and the sacrifices he 
has made to this country.
    But it does condition you. I am not shaped, framed, molded, 
consumed by that experience. Of course not. But it is part of 
me. I tried to explain that in my opening statement. We are all 
shaped by those experiences. I hope that experience that I have 
had is for the better. I hope if I have the privilege of 
serving as Secretary of Defense it will put someone in charge 
at the Pentagon--not questioning past Secretaries of Defense; I 
can only speak for myself--who understands the realities of 
consequences of war. It does not mean I am better, but that is 
who I am. I do not walk away from that. I acknowledge that. But 
it does not consume me, Senator.
    I do not see the lens of every world event and whether we 
should use American power through the lens of Vietnam. That is 
part of me. It is part of that lens. I think that is for the 
better. I think we need to be cautious with our power. I think 
we need to be wise with our power.
    We have great power. We have awesome power. No nation in 
the world is even in our league. We have done so much good with 
that power. I do not think there is a nation in the history of 
man who has ever been as judicious and careful with its power 
as we have. I want to make sure we continue to do that, as you 
all do.
    We will have differences, Senator, on policies, but all I 
can do is my best based on my own experiences. As I also said 
in my statement, reaching out, listening, learning, never 
knowing enough, understand circumstances change.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Nelson.
    Senator Sessions.
    Senator Sessions. Thank you. Senator Hagel, it is great to 
have you with us and to have this hearing and an opportunity to 
discuss important issues. I admire your service to your 
country, and your combat experience is something we all honor 
and respect.
    I have been for the most part chairman, ranking member, or 
member of the Strategic Forces Subcommittee of this Senate 
Armed Services Committee for the time I have been in the 
Senate. We came into the Senate together. So I have had some 
experience and knowledge about the great debates involving 
nuclear weapons and national security. I believe the Secretary 
of Defense should be the core, the rock-solid person, for 
defense of America. I believe he should project an image of 
solidity and steadfastness that the whole world and American 
people can depend on.
    I am more than a little troubled by the report that you 
participated in--the Global Zero report that calls for the 
total elimination of nuclear weapons, and clearly suggests that 
is an achievable goal in a realistic period of time, although 
certainly not immediately. Your report writers defend you. They 
have issued an article defending you and the report that was 
just issued last year. They protest mightily and say that, 
``Chuck Hagel and Global Zero's views on nuclear weapons are in 
the national security interests and squarely in the 
mainstream.''
    Indeed, your defendants insist you are in the mainstream 
because your position is that of President Obama's, and 
dramatically they assert you are out of the mainstream if you 
believe otherwise.
    So your report explicitly calls for, ``an urgent and 
transformational change in the U.S. nuclear force structure, 
strategy, and posture''. I think it is a rather exceedingly 
dramatic report frankly.
    Now, specifically as to the historic nuclear force triad 
that has been the bedrock of our defense policy for half a 
century, your report calls for bilaterally or unilaterally 
totally eliminating the intercontinental ballistic missile 
(ICBM) triad leg. In fact, the report refers to itself as a 
dyad instead of a triad report. You propose eliminating the 76 
nuclear B-52 bombers entirely, leaving only 18 B-2 bombers, 
reducing nuclear submarines from 14 to 10.
    Further, the committee report that you were one of the five 
members that produced it, you favor eliminating all tactical 
nuclear weapons, de-alerting all weapons, and according to the 
report as I read it, that would mean it would take from 1 to 3 
days to place a weapon on alert. I certainly agree that that 
would be a transformational change in our nuclear force 
structure, strategy, and posture. I think it is a big historic 
thing.
    Now, General Kehler, the present Commander of the U.S. 
Strategic Command (STRATCOM) and Secretary of Air Force Mike 
Donley do not agree with the recommendations in this report, 
people you will supervise. General Kehler told the press on 
August 8, 2012, ``I do not support the former vice chairman,'' 
and that is General Cartwright. ``I do not think that we are in 
a place he suggests now, nor do I see that particular place any 
time soon.'' So you will be supervising him.
    Would you share with us where you are today on that issue? 
Do you support the view of General Kehler, or do you support 
the view of the commission report that you signed?
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Senator. Let me first correct 
some of your interpretation of what the Global Zero report was, 
and is, and what it actually said.
    First, it did not propose or call for anything. It was, in 
fact--the word specifically used at the front end of that 
report was ``illustrative,'' proposing nothing, but laying out 
different scenarios, and possibilities, and schedules. But here 
is the key part of all this, and by the way, this was 
summarized in a letter to President Obama in 2009. Bilateral, 
never unilateral. Nothing was ever suggested on a unilateral 
basis to take down our arsenal. Negotiated, verifiable. These 
are all terms that were in the report.
    As Senator Nunn said in his opening statement, and I have 
alluded generally to this, the mainstream thinking of most 
Presidents we have had the last 65 years, and I go back to 
Ronald Reagan's comments as Senator Nunn quoted, was reduction 
of nuclear weapons for the obvious reasons. That is why we have 
engaged in treaties to reduce nuclear weapons. Those were not 
unilateral arrangements, those were bilateral arrangements.
    The United States and the Russians have about 90 percent of 
the nuclear in the world today. Now there are others who have 
them. There are nine nuclear powers, dangerous. Obviously the 
so-called loose nukes or non-state actors, terrorist groups 
getting a hold of these are threats.
    Senator Sessions. But, Senator Hagel, I think----
    Senator Hagel. I just want to make sure that is clear.
    Senator Sessions. I know, but it is not clear in your 
report. The report says on page 1, ``These steps could be taken 
with Russia in unison through reciprocal presidential 
directives, negotiated in another round of bilateral arms 
reductions, or in implemented unilateral.'' A little further 
on----
    Senator Hagel. Well, that is not proposing.
    Senator Sessions.--it says it two more times in this report 
that these ideas could be a--less good approach would be to 
adopt this agenda unilaterally. It suggests that it should be 
adopted. That would not be as good, but you would do so. There 
is another reference to that, and it does call for these 
reductions. In your conclusion, you say, ``The United States 
should seek to achieve such reductions in 10 years and plan to 
base its arsenal on a dyad of nuclear delivery vehicles.''
    You go on to say, ``Trident missile submarines--the optimal 
mix would consist of 10 Trident submarines and 18 B-2 bombers, 
the normal conditions it would have for the warhead stockpile 
would be deployed on these carriers. The other half would be 
kept in reserve. All land-based intercontinental missiles armed 
with nuclear payloads would be retired, along with carriers of 
non-strategic nuclear warheads, all of which would be 
eliminated. That is the tactical nuclear weapons, all of which 
would be eliminated from the stockpile. B-52 bombers would be 
completely dismantled or converted to carry only conventional 
weapons.''
    I do not believe that is consistent with the policy of the 
country as a whole. I supported legislation to create a 
bipartisan commission several years ago to help us--Senator 
Levin and others supported that. The House supported it, and it 
passed--to help us determine how much further we can continue 
to draw down our nuclear weapons. It was chaired by William 
Perry, the Secretary of Defense under Carter, James 
Schlesinger, who served in the Carter and Nixon cabinets. It 
had John Glenn on it, Martin Halperin, Lee Hamilton, James 
Woolsey, Keith Paine, and others. They had access to the 
Defense Department secret documents and information, and they 
came out with quite a different view.
    Let me just point out some of the things that they came up 
with. They said maintain the triad. They said maintain tactical 
nuclear weapons. They recommended no change in the alert 
statute, and, in fact, the Defense Department's nuclear posture 
review under President Obama and Secretary Gates, explicitly 
found the alert status should not be altered in their review of 
nuclear weapons. They fundamentally found a need for nuclear 
weapons. That is the point. Your commission basically said that 
it undermines the request for nuclear weapons.
    I will give you a chance to respond. On Global Zero, they 
sort of I think foresaw this argument. Before your report was 
issued, they said this, ``The conditions that might make 
possible the global elimination of nuclear weapons are not 
present today, and their creation would require a fundamental 
transformation of the world political order.''
    That is a very strong statement, and I think it was aimed 
at this idea that is practical and realistic for us to expect 
that the world is going to move to zero nuclear weapons.
    So first, I want to ask you one question that you told me 
in our meeting that I appreciated. President Obama stated when 
we did the New START treaty discussion, vote, and debate, ``I 
intend to modernize or replace the triad of strategy nuclear 
systems, a heavy bomber, and air launch cruise missile, and 
ICBM, and nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine.''
    He committed to, ``accelerate the design of the Chemistry 
and Metallurgy Research Replacement Nuclear Facility and the 
Uranium Processing Facility''--those are the two buildings 
where our modernizations would take place--``and request full 
funding for those projects''.
    First, let me ask you, would you support that vision and 
commitment the President made?
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely I do, and----
    Senator Sessions. Then you are free to respond to what I 
was saying. But I really do feel that--I am uneasy about this 
vision expressed in that committee report of yours.
    Senator Hagel. Let me just briefly come back to what you 
said, Senator, and I appreciate you giving me a chance to 
respond.
    First, my record has always been very clear, everything I 
have voted on in my career in the Senate and wherever I have 
been. A strong, agile, safe, secure, effective, nuclear arsenal 
for the United States is not debatable. I voted that way. I 
believe that. You know that the home of STRATCOM is now in 
Senator Fischer's State, which used to be the State I 
represented or I used to be in that State as a Senator. It has 
not changed.
    I know a little something about it, not as much as you and 
others on the committee, but I have been to that facility many 
times. I know General Kehler very well, know all the STRATCOM 
commanders very well. You know what the motto of STRATCOM is. 
It is a pretty significant motto. ``Peace is our business.''
    What has kept the peace, as I noted in my opening statement 
as much as anything else in the world since World War II, is 
that nuclear deterrent. This prospective, Secretary of Defense, 
would never do anything or in any way take any action that 
would minimize, or harm, or downgrade that reality. But again, 
I go back to--not to get caught up in this report. This report 
was about illustrative possibilities, what and how could things 
be done. Always bilateral. Always verifiable. Always 
negotiable, just as we have always done in our treaties.
    I will stop there. That is the commitment I make to you. I 
made it to the President. My record is clear on that.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you. I think we have to move on.
    Senator Sessions. Just thank you. I would just say the 
vision stated in your Global Zero report, I believe, is likely 
to create instability rather than confidence and stability, 
create uncertainty in the world among our allies and our 
potential adversaries. I do not believe it would meet the goal 
that you said not to weaken our ability.
    So I am troubled that--I feel--I appreciate your comments 
today, but I am troubled by the language in that report.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Sessions.
    Senator McCaskill.
    Senator McCaskill. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. In the 6 years 
I have served on this committee, I have served under Senator 
Warner as a ranking Republican member, and Senator McCain as a 
ranking Republican member. I have to tell you that there has 
never been a time that I did not sense that we all agreed that 
our work on behalf of our Nation in terms of protecting our 
country and defending our country, that it was a bipartisan 
effort.
    I believe very strongly that this committee needs to be 
bipartisan. I hope that the new ranking member holds the same 
regard for that as Senator McCain and Senator Warner did, 
because at all times I felt that they were respectful and were 
willing to listen to our disagreements. I am hopeful that will 
continue, and I will be optimistic that it will.
    I am going to ask a series of questions, and then at the 
end of them, if you need more time, just say so.
    Do you believe that all options should be on the table when 
we confront Iran?
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely.
    Senator McCaskill. Do you believe Iran is currently a state 
sponsor of terrorism and provides material support to Hezbollah 
and to Hamas?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, and I am on the record a number of 
times saying that.
    Senator McCaskill. Do you support sanctions against Iran?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator McCaskill. Do you believe that the United States 
should unilaterally eliminate its nuclear arsenal?
    Senator Hagel. No.
    Senator McCaskill. Do you agree with four national security 
leaders, including Henry Kissinger, Sam Nunn, William Perry, 
and George Schultz, President Reagan's Secretary of State, when 
they said, ``The four of us have come together in a nonpartisan 
effort, deeply committed to building support for a global 
effort to reduce reliance on nuclear weapons, to prevent their 
spread into potentially dangerous hands, and to ultimately to 
end them as a threat to the world. We remain committed to 
working towards this vision and advancing the steps essential 
to achieve this goal.'' Do you agree with those four bipartisan 
national leaders in the area of national security and foreign 
policy?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator McCaskill. I wanted to take a few minutes to talk 
about some of the things we talked about in my office, and some 
people on the committee are going, oh, here she goes on 
contracting, but the auditability of the Defense Department.
    I know you stated in some of the advance policy questions 
that you want to hold people accountable on auditability. I do 
not think most Americans realize that as we face shrinking 
budgets and as we want to secure the preeminence of our 
military, and not hollow out the spending at the Defense 
Department, that auditability is a crucial ingredient to us 
being able to figure out whether all the money that is being 
spent there is being spent like Americans would want it to be 
spent.
    Can you reassure me that auditability, as prescribed by 
law, coming through this committee, that it needs to happen no 
later than 2017? Can you make a commitment to me today on the 
record that will be a priority of yours, making sure as, 
Secretary Panetta did and Secretary Gates before him, that 
auditability will be an essential priority of your time as 
Secretary of Defense?
    Senator Hagel. As I told you, Senator, I will. I make that 
commitment to this committee.
    Senator McCaskill. Then turning to contracting, I have yet 
to have provided to me, other than raw numbers that we spent, 
any data that would indicate that major infrastructure 
rebuilding as part of a counterinsurgency strategy works.
    There are many things that work in a counterinsurgency 
strategy, and one of them, as it was originally posed to me 
back some 6 years ago on this committee by General Petraeus, 
was that the Commander's Emergency Response Program (CERP) 
funds, that walking around money to fix plate glass windows in 
neighborhoods, that that was an essential part of the 
counterinsurgency (COIN) strategy.
    That morphed into our military building major 
infrastructure projects without really any data ever to 
indicate that the billions of dollars that we were spending 
was, in fact, advancing our military mission.
    In addition to that, it is clear if you want to look at 
Iraq and the failures that Iraq represents in some ways, one of 
the failures is the crumbling investments that this country 
made in Iraq: the health centers that never opened, the water 
parks that sit crumbling, the power facilities that were blown 
up before they even had an opportunity to operate. I can go 
down billions of dollars of waste because we didn't do the 
analysis on sustainability after we left.
    I am convinced that we have made the same mistakes in 
Afghanistan. I would like your response to this issue of major 
infrastructure building while we are in a conflict being 
conducted by our military, not by the U.S. Agency for 
International Development, not by the State Department, and 
whether or not you would make a commitment to come back to this 
committee with a report analyzing whether or not there is data 
to support that aspect of the COIN strategy.
    Senator Hagel. I will make that commitment, and it is part 
of the larger series of questions and factors always involved 
when a nation gets clearly committed, as we were, and still 
are, in Afghanistan, and were in Iraq for 8 years. When you are 
at war, the highest first priority is to take care of your 
people. As a result of that, all the rest of the normal 
latitude, and guidance, theory, and policy, is secondary.
    I think in both of those wars, because we got ourselves in 
so deep with so many people, and the welfare of our men and 
women was paramount, we tried a lot of things. We had never 
been this way before. We had never seen anything quite like 
these two situations. As a result, our Special Inspectors 
General have come up with billions and billions and billions of 
dollars that are unaccounted for, corruption, fraud, waste, 
abuse. It really is quite astounding. But when you think about 
the universe of money that went into both those wars, no one 
should be surprised.
    Now, how do we fix it? What do we do? To your point, how do 
we learn? How do we learn from this? We need to learn from 
this. It was not the fault of the military. The military was 
asked to do everything. We overloaded the circuits of our 
military. We said, you do it. You have the money. You have the 
structure. You have the organization. You have the people. Now 
go do it.
    We put these people--these young captains--you talked about 
CERP funds--in very difficult spots. These young captains were 
given $100,000 in cash, essentially walking around money to 
take care of tribal chiefs and so on and so on. It wasn't their 
fault. They were told to do this. This is what was part of the 
strategy.
    I do not question necessarily any particular strategy or 
part of it, but I do think it is part of the whole that you are 
talking about. If I am confirmed and go over there, I will take 
a look at this, and we will go deeper and wider into this 
because we owe it to our people. We owe it to the people of 
this country who pay the bills. For the future, what did we 
learn for future challenges?
    Senator McCaskill. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator McCaskill.
    Senator Chambliss.
    Senator Chambliss. Thanks, Mr. Chairman. Chuck, again, 
congratulations on your nomination. As we talked the other day, 
you and I have been good friends since I came to the Senate in 
2002, sat next to each other for 6 years on the Intel 
Committee, and during that process you cast some votes that I 
questioned. But we were always able to dialogue, and it never 
impacted our friendship, and I am very appreciative of that.
    You also were introduced by two of my dearest friends, 
Senator Nunn and Senator Warner, which certainly is a credit to 
you.
    I want to drill down, Chuck, on the issue that I think is 
going to be very much at the forefront--probably the number one 
issue you are going to have to deal with, assuming that you are 
confirmed, and that is the issue of our relationship with Iran 
and where we go in the future, short term as well as long term.
    Now, you wrote in your book, ``We blundered into Iraq 
because of flawed intelligence, flawed assumptions, flawed 
judgments, and ideologically driven motives. We must not repeat 
these errors with Iran, and the best way to avoid them is to 
maintain an effective dialogue.'' You then go on to advocate 
again, ``for a direct and strategic diplomatic initiative''.
    Now, I heard you in your opening comments say that your 
position on Iran is prevention, not containment, when it comes 
to their nuclear weaponization. I want you to expand on that, 
and I want to go back to Senator Inhofe and Senator Reed's 
question or comment relative to why you did not vote to 
designate the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Council as a 
terrorist organization.
    Iran is the number one terrorist sponsoring state in the 
world. I do not think there is any disagreement about that. I 
want you to expand on your position on a nuclear weaponized 
Iran, and talk about red lines. If your position is truly 
prevention and not containment, Chuck, what is the red line? 
What is the point? We know there are some things happening over 
there right now that are very serious. So how far do we go?
    Do you still advocate direct negotiations with Iran as you 
said and you made clear that all options are on the table, and 
you stated again that military options is one of those. If you 
will, talk about direct negotiation. We have never negotiated 
with a terrorist state. Why do you feel like that we ought to 
dialogue with them, even on this issue today?
    Lastly, what alterations, if any, do you think are 
necessary to our military force posture in the Gulf region to 
deter Iranian regional ambitions and support international 
diplomatic efforts to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons 
capability? That is a broad statement on my part, broad 
question, but this is the issue from a national security 
standpoint, Chuck, and I would like you to be pretty specific.
    Senator Hagel. Let us start with the specific question on a 
vote regarding designating the Revolutionary Guard as a 
terrorist organization. You recall because you were there, 
there were 22 Senators who voted against that. The effort 
against it, the main point made on the floor of the Senate came 
from Senator Jim Webb. His point was we have never, ever 
designated a part of a legitimate government, a state--and when 
I say ``legitimate,'' it does not mean we agree with Iran, but 
it is a member of the United Nations. Almost all of our allies 
have embassies in Iran. So that is why I note an elected 
legitimate government, whether we agree or not.
    But we have never made any part of a legitimate independent 
government designated them or made them part of a terrorist 
organization. We have just never done that. So you say, well, 
so what? What is the big problem? The problem was, at least 22 
of us believed--they were both Republicans and Democrats, by 
the way, in that vote, but it was Jim Webb who was on the floor 
most of the time on it--said that if you do that, that is 
tantamount to giving the President of the United States 
authority to use military force against Iran without having to 
come back to get a resolution from, or partner with, or 
cooperate with, the Congress of the United States. Essentially 
if we vote for this, we are giving a President, in a sense, 
that authority. Now, you can agree or disagree with that.
    But I listened to that debate, and there was some pretty 
thoughtful debate. That debate I thought was pretty powerful 
with me. We were already in two wars at the time, and I thought 
that this made sense, and so I voted against it. That is why I 
voted against that. You might also remember that almost 
Secretary of State Kerry voted against it. Then Senator Obama, 
he gave speeches against it. He did not vote that day. Vice 
President Biden voted against it. Dick Lugar voted against it. 
There were some other Republicans.
    As to the Iranian red line, Persian Gulf, some of the 
Iranian questions you asked. I support the President's strong 
position on containment as I have said, and I will speak more 
specifically to a couple of the examples you used from my book. 
But his position I think is right.
    When you asked the question about red line, I think the 
President has gone as far as he should go publicly on that. He 
said clearly that in his words, he has Israel's back. He said 
that his policy is not to allow the Iranians to get a nuclear 
weapon.
    What constitutes when action would be taken? I think that 
is always something that should not be discussed publicly or 
debated publicly or out in the public domain.
    Your quotations from my book, which you acknowledge as well 
that I always said the military option should be on the table, 
and I had said that consistently as well as engaging with Iran. 
I have always thought it is far smarter to approach these very 
serious threats, including Iran, probably as significant a 
threat as we have out there today, although North Korea is 
beyond a threat. It is a real nuclear power and quite 
unpredictable. I think Pakistan is another very complicated 
reality.
    But staying on Iran, I think we are far smarter to do what 
the President has been doing, which I laid out, by the way, in 
my book. I have a chapter on Iran. I have two chapters on Iraq. 
I have a chapter on the Middle East. Getting the world 
community behind us with these U.N. sanctions through the 
Security Council of the United Nations. These are tough 
sanctions. They are having a tremendous impact, you know that, 
on Iran.
    If, in fact, the military option is the only one required, 
I think we are always on higher ground in every way, 
international law, domestic law, people of the world, people of 
the region to be with us on this if we have tried and if we 
have gone through every possibility to resolve this in a 
responsible, peaceful way rather than going to war.
    Everything I said in my book was about that. I do not have 
a problem with engaging. I think great powers engage. I think 
engagement is clearly in our interests. That is not 
negotiation. Engagement is not appeasement. Engagement is not 
surrender. I think if the time is right, the climate is right, 
the dynamics are right, we should find ways, if we can find 
ways. We cannot force it. But I think we are always smarter and 
wiser to take that approach initially.
    Posture in the Persian Gulf. Senator, our Fifth Fleet is 
located in the Persian Gulf in Bahrain. As you also know, we 
have a couple of carrier battle groups in that area. Our 
military posture there is very strong. It is very ready. It is 
very capable. These are contingencies and options that the 
Secretary of Defense, working with these Service Chiefs and 
their combatant commanders, always have to give in the present 
and make sure that we are prepared.
    Let me stop there, I may have missed some of the specific 
things that you wanted to discuss.
    Senator Chambliss. I am understanding you to say that you 
are not ready to discuss red lines in a specific way. Am I 
hearing that right?
    Senator Hagel. I do not think that is my role now to start 
with. I am not the Secretary of Defense. But I think the 
President is wise in his course of action in not discussing 
that publicly. I think it is a far smarter way to handle it, 
and I think he has said what he needs to say. I think it has 
been understood in Iran. I think the world understands his 
position.
    By the way, I have just been handed a note that I misspoke 
and said I supported the President's position on containment. 
If I said that, I meant to say that obviously his position on 
containment, we do not have a position on containment. I 
recognize that I have had more attention paid to my words the 
last 8 weeks that I ever thought possible, so I do not take any 
chances. Thank you.
    Senator Chambliss. I think I understood you correct on 
containment and prevention.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Chambliss. Thanks, Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Just to make sure your correction is clear, 
we do have a position on containment, which is that we do not 
favor containment.
    Senator Hagel. We do not favor containment. That is the 
President's position, and that was my position.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you. I just want to clarify the 
record.
    Senator Hagel. If you need further clarification, that is 
why I am here.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Chambliss.
    Senator Udall.
    Senator Udall. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Good morning, 
Senator Hagel.
    Senator Hagel. Senator.
    Senator Udall. Thank you for your service. Thank you for 
your willingness to once again heed the call and lead DOD.
    We had a great private meeting with you last week. We 
covered many of the threats and challenges that our country 
faces: shrinking budgets, strategic national security shifts, 
and ensuring, as you have underlined over and over again 
already this morning, that we continue to provide fair and 
equal opportunities for all of our servicemembers and their 
families.
    Again, I want to tell you I appreciate that opportunity. I 
am going to take you up on your offer, if you are confirmed, to 
continue sitting down with you as a member of the Armed 
Services Committee.
    I know this issue has already been addressed, but I want to 
make sure that I am on the record as raising my concerns, and I 
want, as I think this committee should, to give you every 
opportunity to clarify and underline your point of view.
    When we met privately, you emphasized your determination to 
keep all options on the table with regard to Iran, including a 
military strike, if Iran continues to pursue a nuclear program 
in defiance of this international obligation.
    We also discussed your longstanding support of Israel and 
our longstanding relationship. But you have critics out there--
I do not have to tell you that--who maintain that your record 
on Iran is in question, and that you are anti-Israel. These are 
serious charges.
    So let me direct some questions your way. Why should 
Americans trust that you will consider every option when it 
comes to one of the most serious national security threats 
facing us today, which is Iran?
    Senator Hagel. First, thank you for an opportunity to 
clarify these issues. My record has been very clear on Iran. 
Senator Chambliss noted from my 2008 book and my chapter, 
specifically noting that I said the military option must remain 
on the table. I said that as recently in an op-ed that I co-
authored last year in the Washington Post with two former U.S. 
Central Command (CENTCOM) commanders.
    We talked about Iran, and one of the very specific points 
we bring out in that op-ed was the military option must remain 
on the table along with all the other areas of effort, 
expertise, diplomacy, economics, and sanctions, the President 
is using, which I have already said I support.
    My record is rather thorough on this, and I would continue 
to support that position, and I strongly support the 
President's position.
    Senator Udall. Senator, talk about your view on Israel, our 
relationship with Israel, how can we continue to have a special 
alliance with a country with whom we share more than an 
economic or political philosophy, but with a broader or moral 
connection that we have to Israel?
    Senator Hagel. I have said many times, just as I have said 
regarding the military option on Iran many times, in my book, 
speeches on the floor, interviews I have given, I am a strong 
supporter of Israel. I have been. I will continue to be. I have 
also said specifically, and I believe this is in my book, that 
we have a special relationship with Israel.
    Again, my record is pretty clear. I voted in 12 years in 
the U.S. Senate for every authorization, every appropriation 
that I had an opportunity to vote on for Israel. I have been to 
Israel many times. I have met with their leaders many times.
    So again, if you look at my record, I think my record is 
pretty clear in my strong support for Israel.
    Senator Udall. Senator, I heard you say when you discussed 
your vote against the resolution applying to the Iranian 
Revolutionary Guard, that in the end you were protecting 
Congress' prerogative when it comes to declaring war. Is that 
correct?
    Senator Hagel. That is exactly right. That is exactly what 
I was saying, and I did not say it, I guess, that way. But that 
was the point. Again, I say, like I have in answering some of 
the other questions, it was not a question of the objective. I 
shared the objective, and I suspect all 22 members in the 
Senate who voted against that resolution supported the 
objective. But as Jim Webb made the case I think pretty 
effectively, and Senator Webb was an individual who had rather 
considerable experience in this business. He had been Secretary 
of Navy under Ronald Reagan. He had been Assistant Secretary of 
Defense under Ronald Reagan. One of the most decorated veterans 
of Vietnam, U.S. Senator, celebrated author, lawyer. I thought 
he made a pretty strong, persuasive case. So did many of us.
    Senator Udall. Let us turn to cyber security. I was pleased 
that you mentioned cyber security early in your initial 
remarks. The Pentagon's move to significantly expand its cyber 
security assets and knowledge. I have to talk about Colorado 
since I represent Colorado. The Air Force Academy is well 
positioned to train those new cyber security experts. We are 
also the home of Space Command and U.S. Northern Command.
    Would you talk a little bit more about your take on cyber 
security, what we ought to be doing, what sorts of resources we 
need?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, you may know that I have been to 
those facilities in Colorado a few times, and I do not know as 
much about them as you do. But I am pretty familiar with them. 
They are essential to our national security.
    Cyber, I believe, represents as big a threat to the 
security of this country as any one specific threat for all the 
reasons this committee understands. It is an insidious, quiet 
kind of a threat that we have never quite seen before. It can 
paralyze a nation in a second, not just a power grid or a 
banking system, but it can knock out satellites. It can take 
down computers on all of our carrier battleships. It can do 
tremendous damage to our national security apparatus.
    That is the larger threat. But when you start defining it 
down, this body, I know. I watched it, went through a pretty 
agonizing 3 months at the end of 2012 trying to find a bill 
that they could agree on cyber. I know, I believe, Congress 
will come back at it in this new Congress. I think you must, 
and you know that.
    Because we have different intergovernmental authorizations 
here--Department of Homeland Security, DOD--where is the 
capacity? Where are the budgets? Where are the authorities? 
This is law enforcement. This is privacy, business, a lot of 
complications that we have really never, ever had to face 
before on other national defense threats to this country.
    So cyber will be an area that we will continue to focus on. 
We must. It is an area that I will put high priority on if I am 
confirmed to be Secretary of Defense.
    Senator Udall. Senator, in the 2013 National Defense 
Authorization Act (NDAA), there is a provision that compels the 
military to accommodate the conscience moral principles or 
religious beliefs of all members of the Armed Forces. It does 
sound reasonable on the surface, but I am especially concerned 
that this could lead to misguided claims of a right to 
discriminate against lesbian, gay, and bisexual servicemembers, 
women, or persons with certain religious beliefs.
    The President has said--I want to quote him--that DOD will, 
``not permit or condone discriminatory actions that compromise 
good order and discipline or otherwise violate military codes 
of conduct''.
    Will you ensure that DOD, in accommodating religious 
beliefs or matters of conscience, does not tolerate 
discrimination or harm to others?
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely. I will faithfully, diligently 
enforce our laws. All men and women deserve the same rights, 
and I can assure you that will be a high priority, to enforce 
that and ensure that in every way through the entire line of 
chain of command and accountability.
    Senator Udall. Thank you, Senator Hagel. I look forward to 
the second round of questions.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Udall. I think it is now afternoon, so good 
afternoon to you, and thank you for being here.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Udall.
    Senator Wicker.
    Senator Wicker. Let me just follow up on that. Does that 
mean, though, a chaplain would have to perform a same-sex 
marriage, in your view, if he objected based on conscience?
    Senator Hagel. I think the Pentagon regulations show, 
Senator, that same-sex marriage is legal in the nine States.
    Senator Wicker. No, would a chaplain be able to bow out of 
that procedure based on conscience?
    Senator Hagel. Certainly.
    Senator Wicker. Okay.
    Senator Hagel. But what we do not want, Senator Udall's 
point is someone to be denied to be married in a chapel or a 
facility and so on, but certainly a matter of conscience, yes. 
What I am talking about is a strict interpretation of defending 
the law, which defends rights.
    Senator Wicker. Thank you very much for clarifying that, 
and thank you for calling on me early on. We had our 
conversation on January 8, and I appreciated that opportunity.
    You just said that your statements over time have gotten a 
lot more attention than you ever dreamed possible. I hope you 
agree that is entirely appropriate in this context.
    Chairman Levin mentioned in his opening statement that in 
speaking your mind, you said terrible things that caused him 
concern. He asked you about that. Senator Inhofe mentioned 
several of your statements involved what some people feel are 
policy reversals based on expediency, and so those are 
concerns.
    You and I talked about two of these topics during our 
conversation, and one of them was with regard to sanctions 
against Iran. You told me in our conversation that you opposed 
unilateral sanctions because they do not work and they isolate 
the United States. Indeed you had made that statement to the 
Omaha paper just the day before. ``I have not supported 
unilateral sanctions because when it is us alone, they do not 
work and they just isolate the United States,'' in the Omaha 
paper.
    I will have to say that statement seems to be in direct 
contradiction to your letter to Senator Boxer 1 week later when 
you told her, ``I agree that with Iran's continued rejection of 
diplomatic overtures, further effective sanctions, both 
multilateral and unilateral, may be necessary.''
    Now, a week before that you said that you have opposed them 
because they do not work. Senator Levin mentioned in his 
statement he disagrees that. He believes they do work. You gave 
him an answer to that statement, and we have it on the record. 
But let me just suggest to you, Senator, that if words have 
meaning, there is no two ways about it. The statement that you 
gave in the Omaha paper and that you gave to me the following 
day is substantially and substantively different from what you 
wrote to Senator Boxer a week later.
    The Office of Secretary of Defense is one of the most 
powerful positions in the country, and arguably in the world. 
This official, whoever he or she is, must lead with clarity and 
precision, and people around the world need to rely on the 
clear meaning of the words of the Secretary of Defense.
    Now, the other thing we discussed that gave me concern 
during our conversation on January 8 was your statement about 
the Jewish lobby. You told me that you have had apologized for 
using that terminology, and you retracted the use of the term 
``Jewish lobby''. What you said was the Jewish lobby 
intimidates a lot of people up here. This was in an interview 
that you gave to Aaron David Miller. You said, ``I've always 
argued against some of the dumb things they do because I don't 
think it's in the interest of Israel.''
    Here is my problem with your position at this point. You 
have corrected the term ``Jewish lobby,'' and I assume now the 
correct term would be ``Israel lobby'' or ``Israeli lobby''. Do 
you still stand by your statement that they succeed in this 
town because of intimidation? That it amounts to causing us to 
do dumb things, because I want to say this, Senator. You are 
here today as the potential Secretary of Defense, and it would 
seem to me that however you characterize them, you have 
suggested that there is an effective lobby out there, whether 
you call them the Jewish lobby, the Israeli lobby, or the 
Israel lobby, and that they succeed in doing dumb things 
through intimidation, and that U.S. policy has been the wrong 
approach because the intimidation has worked.
    So when you talked about the Jewish lobby, were you talking 
about the American Israel Public Affairs Committee? Were you 
talking about NORPAC? Were you talking about Christians United 
or Israel? Do you still believe that their success in this town 
is because of intimidation and that they are, as you stated, 
urging upon our Government that we do dumb things?
    Senator Hagel. First, I have never been accused of 
political expediency. I do not do that. It probably has gotten 
me in some trouble, Senator.
    Second, to address the last comment, and then we will go 
back sanctions. I have already said I regret referencing the 
Jewish lobby. I should have said pro-Israel lobby. I think it 
is the only time on the record that I have ever said that.
    Now, you all have done a lot of work with my record, and, 
yes, it is appropriate, by the way. Any nominee's record, what 
he or she thinks, says, done, absolutely. I was on your side of 
dais for 12 years, so I understand that and that 
responsibility. So I do not have any problem with that. I have 
already noted that I should have used another term, and I am 
sorry, and I regret it.
    On the use of intimidation. I should have used 
``influence,'' I think would have been more appropriate. We 
were talking about in that book, and you evidently read it, 
Aaron David Miller's book, by the way, it is a book, ``The Much 
Too Promised Land.'' He has spoken out directly over the last 
few weeks, written an op-ed about my position because it has 
gotten some attention as you have noted, and been quite 
favorable to me, and said much of that was taken out of 
context, and he was offended by it. Those were his words.
    Those of you who know something about Aaron David Miller 
know that he is Jewish. He is a highly respected individual who 
has counseled Presidents and Secretaries of State. He also says 
in that interview, which is a fairly short interview, he 
mentioned that I am a strong supporter of Israel. That it is in 
the interview. So I think that says something.
    I should not have said ``dumb'' or ``stupid'' because I 
understand, appreciate, there are different views on these 
things. We were talking about Israel. We were talking about the 
Middle East. We were not talking about Armenia, or Turkey, or 
the banking influence, or chamber of commerce influence. That 
was what the context of my comments were about.
    Your point on the unilateral sanctions conversation and the 
quote, a couple of points. Let us go back to the ILSA vote, 
about the original ILSA vote during the Clinton administration 
and connect that to a comment I made in the World Herald about 
they do not work. They are ineffective. By the way, I have 
already noted for the record here that I have supported and 
voted for some unilateral sanctions, and I think I noted three 
specific ones that I recall.
    But on your specific question about the specific comment. 
Just to give you an example of partly what I was talking about. 
You were not in the Senate at the time. Some were. But those 
who were here in the Senate might recall the EU's reaction to 
that ILSA Act. I was not in the Senate when that was voted on 
originally, so I did not have a vote.
    But in 1998, the EU passed a resolution against the United 
States and threatened to take the United States to the World 
Trade Organization. As a consequence, Secretary Albright had to 
get into this, and as a consequence of that, President Clinton 
had to sign a waiver to allow a French oil company not to be 
part of that U.S. unilateral waiver.
    Now I am not suggesting United States action should be 
hostage to the EU or any other country. But what I am 
suggesting is many times there are consequences to these 
actions. Now, every Senator has their own position on these, 
exercise their own judgment as they should, and cast their own 
vote. So I don't think necessarily that there was a disconnect 
from what I said in The World Herald to where I have been on 
international sanctions.
    As to your specific point about supporting unilateral 
sanctions as well as international sanctions in the letter to 
Senator Boxer, it is a different situation to start with. We 
already have very effective international sanctions on Iran.
    Senator Wicker. Are you saying that those two statements do 
not contradict each other, the one to the Omaha paper and the 
one to Senator Boxer?
    Senator Hagel. There are two points to it. Let me finish if 
I could, Senator, thank you, my second point.
    My second point is this. Where we are with Iran today, the 
international sanctions that have been placed on Iran, that 
puts Iran and the United States in a far different place than 
where we were in 2000, or 1998, or 2001 when I did not support 
the reimposition. By the way, the Bush administration did not 
either. They did not want a 5-year reimposition for some of the 
same reasons that I questioned that reimposition of 5 years on 
ILSA.
    But my point in making where we are today, connecting that 
to unilateral sanctions, then we have a different situation. 
Unilateral sanctions, because we have already got strong 
international sanctions, should be considered. I think the 
President is right to consider those. I would support that 
because it is different than it was in 2001 or 1998.
    Senator Wicker. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Wicker.
    Senator Hagan.
    Senator Hagan. Thank you. Senator Hagel, thank you for 
being here. Thank you for your service to our country and the 
military and your service in the U.S. Senate. I also want to 
thank your wife and your family for standing with you today.
    You played an important role in supporting Vietnam veterans 
impacted by the exposure to Agent Orange. I have been involved 
in a similar set of issues facing veterans stationed at Camp 
Lejeune. They continue to search for answers about the effects 
of water contamination there. As many as a million marines and 
their families stationed at the base between the early 1950s 
and the 1980s may have been exposed to harmful chemicals that 
led to the development of cancer and other ailments.
    The quest for answers in looking into this has been long. 
It has been drawn out, and the recognition that men, women, and 
children were dying or going broke paying out of pocket for 
their treatment while they were waiting for these various 
studies to be completed on the water contamination. We in 
Congress took action last year. The House and the Senate passed 
a bill that will provide for the treatment of veterans and 
their family members through the VA.
    I continue to believe that the families of those stationed 
at Camp Lejeune during this time period, they deserve answers 
from the U.S. Government about who was exposed to the harmful 
chemicals, what impact that might have had on their health, and 
what the Government knew about this exposure.
    I have been fighting for answers with a group of other 
committed Senators on a bipartisan basis. Along the way 
progress has been held up by endless bureaucratic delays and 
obstacles.
    My question to you is, do you agree that these marines and 
their families deserve complete answers about the water 
contamination that occurred at Camp Lejeune? If confirmed, will 
you pledge to work with us to overcome any bureaucratic hurdles 
that may halt or delay the pursuit of answers for the affected 
marines and their family members?
    Senator Hagel. Thank you. You noted that we had a long 
conversation about this. I committed to you in your office. I 
will make that commitment in front of this committee. I will do 
that.
    There should never, ever be a question about the health, 
and the safety, and the environment that we put our men and 
women and their families in when we ask them to make sacrifices 
to serve this country. I am committed to that, and we will have 
further conversations.
    Senator Hagan. Thank you. I know you have answered a number 
of questions about Israel already today, but I do have one I 
want to ask you also. There is a special and historic bond 
between the United States and Israel, and I am personally 
committed to Israel's security and identity as a Jewish state.
    When we met earlier this week, I was pleased to hear you 
say you agree and that you also support a two-state solution 
and oppose any unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state.
    We also discussed the need for a strong military and 
intelligence engagement between the United States and Israel. 
Just last fall I was in Israel, and I have spoken with senior 
military officials from both countries, and I have continually 
heard that the ties between our military and our intelligence 
organizations have never been stronger.
    If confirmed, do you intend to maintain this close 
relationship, and do you have any ideas for how we can further 
strengthen this coordination?
    Senator Hagel. I would once again reaffirm the commitment 
that I made to you to this committee. I absolutely support the 
continuation and the strengthening of our relationship with 
Israel. As been noted before, in my book, a chapter I have on 
Israel, I talk about the special and historic relationship 
between the United States and Israel.
    It is critically important that the qualitative military 
edge that we have assured Israel since 1948 be maintained and 
be enhanced. The Iron Dome is I think but one example. The 
latest military exercise we had with the Israelis last fall, 
Austere Challenge, it was the largest military exercise between 
our two countries in the history of our two countries. I think 
our intelligence agencies are working closer, and are stronger 
and more coordinated than ever before.
    I think this President has done as much to support Israel 
as any president, as I mentioned earlier, since Harry Truman, 
and I would look forward to continuing to follow those policies 
and enhance those policies.
    Senator Hagan. Thank you. I wanted to ask a question on 
sequestration. Stopping sequestration from occurring is very 
important to me. In North Carolina, we have 7 military 
installations, and we have over 100,000 Active Duty 
servicemembers in my State. I believe that these cuts are going 
to harm our national security, will impair our readiness, will 
defer necessary maintenance that will help keep our troops safe 
and delay important investments in research and procurement, as 
well as stunt our economic recovery at this time.
    I do not believe we can allow these cuts to move forward. 
Congress needs to work on a bipartisan basis on a balanced plan 
that will help eliminate this threat of sequestration. Also we 
have to reduce our deficit and protect the critical investments 
and areas in our national defense.
    When we spoke earlier this week, I was pleased to hear you 
say that you did not support these indiscriminate, 
unprioritized cuts that sequestration would cause. If allowed 
to take effect, how will sequestration impact the Department's 
ability to meet the future threats and challenges?
    As I shared with you, I chair the subcommittee of this 
committee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities, so I am 
particularly interested in your thoughts. You were commenting 
earlier to Senator Udall's questions on cyber security issues, 
which is obviously being considered in the Emerging Threats and 
Capabilities Subcommittee.
    My question is, what impact do you believe that these cuts 
would have on our servicemembers and their families at home and 
abroad, and in particular the cuts--the sequestration, how 
would this impact areas such as cyber security and the other 
areas?
    Senator Hagel. First, as we have said this morning and you 
know, the Chiefs have made very clear and Secretary Panetta, 
there will be consequences, significant consequences to the 
management of our Defense Department and our ability to have 
the flexibility to make the decisions not just for the 
immediate, but for the future.
    When you hang that kind of uncertainty over any 
institution, but especially the institution charged with 
national security in our country, it is very dangerous. 
Readiness is obviously the number one priority, and we will 
continue to do that. The Chiefs have already started to work 
through this, and I think in some of the public statements they 
have made, we are preparing for that. They will be prepared. If 
in the event the sequestration does take effect, we will be 
ready to deal with it. But this is going to be very difficult.
    We talked a little earlier here this morning about how we 
are going to have to reduce training, steaming time, flying 
time. But I think the American people do need to be reassured, 
as I think Secretary Panetta and the Chiefs have, that the 
security of this country is not going to be in jeopardy. But it 
is going to be difficult, and it is going to affect longer-term 
kinds of planning.
    But make no mistake, if this happens, this is going to be a 
severe problem.
    Senator Hagan. My time is up. Thank you for your comments.
    Chairman Levin. Senator Hagan, thank you so much. Now we 
were going to work right through the vote that is going on now, 
but we are going to take a 10-minute recess right now and come 
right back. Then we are going to call on Senator Ayotte and 
then Senator Manchin. They are next in line, and I urge them to 
go vote and come right back.
    We will now recess for 10 minutes. [Recessed.]
    Chairman Levin. We will come back to order.
    Senator Ayotte.
    Senator Ayotte. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    I want to thank you, Senator Hagel, for your service to our 
country and for being here today in this important hearing, and 
I want to thank your family as well.
    Senator Hagel, I think we have established, as I understand 
it from the prior questions you have been asked, in July 2001, 
you were one of only two Senators to vote against extending the 
Iran Sanctions Act, the sanctions in that act. That is a vote 
that you have agreed that you have taken. Correct?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Ayotte. Yes or no? Yes. That was when you were only 
one of two Senators in the entire Senate to vote against that.
    Also, in 2008, I believe you were asked you were again one 
of two Senators within the Senate Banking Committee, though, 
not the entire Senate, to vote against the Comprehensive Iran 
Sanctions Accountability Act of 2008. Is that right?
    Senator Hagel. That is right.
    Senator Ayotte. Okay. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Yes. I am sorry. Yes.
    Senator Ayotte. Yes, thank you, Senator.
    As I understand it, on October 2, 2008, Majority Leader 
Harry Reid brought a similar bill to the floor. In fact, it was 
called the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions Accountability Act of 
2008, and he brought it to the floor on October 2, 2008. There 
have been media reports that you blocked unanimous consent for 
the consideration of that bill. Are those true or not?
    Senator Hagel. I was one of some Republican Senators who 
did not want that vote to go forward. I voted against it in the 
subcommittee, and the reason I did was because the Bush 
administration did not want that bill to go forward.
    The reason that they didn't is because they were involved 
in negotiations with the Russians in the U.N. and Security 
Council members to put multilateral sanctions on Iran.
    Senator Ayotte. Thank you.
    But just to be clear, you did block unanimous consent of 
that bill in 2008?
    Senator Hagel. I was part of an effort, yes. That is right.
    Senator Ayotte. Okay. Thank you.
    Also, would it surprise you that an earlier version of that 
sanctions bill was actually cosponsored by Secretary Kerry, 
Secretary Clinton, and President Obama at the time? You were 
not a cosponsor. Would that surprise you?
    Senator Hagel. Well, no, not necessarily. I didn't ever 
base my votes, Senator, on what everybody else thought or did. 
I voted based on what I thought was right.
    Senator Ayotte. Also, we, of course, the sanctions that are 
in place now, that bill or its next generation passed the U.S. 
Senate after you left in a vote of 99 to 0, and no one in the 
Senate, in fact, voted against that. So that has been our clear 
policy of the bill, really the next generation of the bill that 
you blocked in the Senate.
    I want to ask you also about your position with respect to 
involvement in the Global Zero report. I know many people have 
asked you questions about this.
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Ayotte. Here is what is troubling me. You have 
testified before this committee today that you have never been 
for unilateral nuclear disarmament. In other words, unilateral 
actions by the United States of America. Yet this report 
itself, which you call an illustration, its illustration or 
recommendation or however you want to frame it, is to 
actually--there are many recommendations in it.
    One of them is to eliminate a leg of our triad, which is 
the land-based ICBMs. You would agree with that? That is the 
illustration that is contained in this report, or you call it 
an illustration. Is that right?
    Senator Hagel. I call it an illustration, Senator, because 
that is the term it used at the front end of the report.
    Senator Ayotte. Well, let us----
    Senator Hagel. Not a recommendation.
    Senator Ayotte. Let me talk about the other terms that this 
report uses because this report twice, as Senator Sessions 
asked you, on page 1 and on page 16 says that the illustrations 
or this example given in this report, one of which is 
eliminating a leg of our nuclear triad could be implemented 
unilaterally.
    So here is what I am struggling with. Why would you ever 
put your name on a report that is inherently inconsistent with 
what you are telling us today is that you have never been for 
unilateral disarmament as a possibility?
    Senator Hagel. It is not inconsistent, I don't believe, 
Senator. But you used the term ``could''. That is a pretty 
important operative word in the report.
    The report does not recommend we do these things. The 
report says ``could,'' ``illustrative,'' ``scenarios,'' 
``possibilities''. You probably know the four other individuals 
who were involved in that report, mainly General Cartwright, 
former strategic commander and----
    Senator Ayotte. Senator Hagel, I know we don't have a lot 
of time here. I don't dispute the qualifications or the service 
of the other individuals that are involved in this report. But 
of all the illustrations and of all the ``coulds'' you could 
pick, this report says that the President could implement these 
unilaterally, although that is inconsistent with what you say 
is your position. Yet you signed off on this.
    This report also says of all the illustrations you could 
have picked, the illustration is eliminating a leg of our 
nuclear triad. One thing that troubles me is that of all the 
things that this group could have picked as what you call an 
illustration is a significant reduction in our nuclear 
deterrent.
    To me, I view that as troubling and inconsistent. One thing 
I would hope you wouldn't do as Secretary of Defense is to sign 
off on a report that would say something like unilateral, like 
this one does, that could be implemented unilaterally that is 
different than your philosophy or our policy.
    Senator Hagel. As Secretary of Defense, I won't be signing 
off on reports in the same way as a private citizen. Obviously, 
I will have a different kind of responsibility if I am 
confirmed by the Senate.
    But I don't think that there is anything that also changes 
my position in that report because it was a letter sent, which 
you may have, to the President of the United States----
    Senator Ayotte. Just so we are clear, and I am not--I don't 
want to interrupt you, but we just don't have a lot of time. 
Just so we are clear, you don't view what you are telling us 
today and the language in this report as inconsistent?
    Senator Hagel. I do not because it wasn't a recommendation. 
The report also says and the authors of it says, have always 
said, none of this can be any reductions unilateral, just like 
any strategic arms reduction treaty that we have signed, both 
Republican and Democrats have led on that, has to be bilateral, 
has to be verifiable, has to be negotiated.
    I have always been there, and that is where we have been on 
this report.
    Senator Ayotte. Okay. Thank you.
    May I follow up on the discussion about containment, 
nuclear containment with Iran? The first question I would have, 
as you said very clearly to Senator Levin, that you believe 
that a military option should be on the table with respect to 
Iran. In fact, I think you said, ``I do, I have, and I strongly 
agree'' in terms of that being one of the options the President 
of the United States would have in addressing Iran is the 
language that you said.
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Ayotte. Can you help me understand when you went to 
Islamabad, Pakistan, in 2006, you said at that time that a 
military strike against Iran, a military option is not a 
viable, feasible, or responsible option. It strikes me as what 
you are saying about the military option now seems inconsistent 
with that statement.
    Why would you make that statement in Pakistan that it is 
not a viable, feasible, or responsible option in light of your 
statement today that you do, ``I have, and I strongly agree'' 
that a military option should be on the table?
    Senator Hagel. That statement was made in the context of 
all options regarding Iran, and Pakistan was where I was at the 
time. The larger context of that was nuclear powers, which 
certainly Pakistan is part of that club.
    Not unlike what Secretary Gates said about a strike on 
Iran, my point was that this would not be a preferable option. 
There would be consequences to this option. Things would happen 
as a result of it.
    If we could find a better option, a better way to deal with 
Iran to assure they do not get nuclear weapons, then we are far 
better off. That was the context of that statement.
    Senator Ayotte. Senator Hagel, I know that my time is up, 
and I know we will have an opportunity for a second round of 
questions. But as I see your quote, it didn't say preferable 
option. It said it was not a responsible option. I view those 
words as having a very different meaning.
    So I look forward to following up in the subsequent round 
of questioning. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Ayotte.
    Senator Manchin.
    Senator Manchin. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, thank you so much and your family for your 
service and for putting your services on the line for us. I 
appreciate it very much.
    I would like to say this. You and I have not known each 
other before. I never had the pleasure of serving with you, 
which I wish I would have. We had a great conversation. You 
bring a breath of fresh air, truly a breath of fresh air to 
this process in a bipartisan way. Having two great Senators 
sitting by your side--one a Democrat, one a Republican--that 
basically support you wholeheartedly speaks volumes in the 
toxic process that we have today.
    With that being said, also everyone has been so fixated on 
your past, what you have said, and I think I have come to learn 
in the very short time I have been a Senator that this town and 
this process and this body has become almost a guilt by 
conversation. With that being said, I respect you being the 
person being able to say what you thought needed to be said. 
You voted the way you thought you should be voting for your 
constituents and your country, and you weren't really driven by 
your party or by any pressure groups.
    I can't tell you how much I wish I would have served with 
you. Sometimes I feel very lonely.
    With all that being said, sir, we are asked to consider you 
as a part of the Cabinet. Is there anything that would lead us 
to believe that you wouldn't follow the orders that were given?
    Senator Hagel. No. I understand clearly the 
responsibilities of the Secretary of Defense. As I said in my 
opening statement, those responsibilities are very serious. I 
don't know of many jobs that are more serious, and I would 
obviously always make every decision for the Defense Department 
and my advice to the President based on only one thing, and 
that is the security of this country.
    Senator Manchin. I looked back at your record. You and I 
come from the same era. We are very close in age, and I 
remember the Vietnam era very well. That, I think, shaped all 
of us to a certain extent of how we looked after, post-Vietnam, 
of how we would have looked at it if we would have known what 
we knew before.
    I am sure that kind of guided you as you looked at this, 
Iraq, and I saw the information that we were given. If I had 
been a Senator, probably I might have voted also, like many 
people that were misled.
    But after having seen 5 or 6 years of that unfortunate 
scenario play out, the surge, and I know where you are coming 
from, would you say that your experiences in Vietnam and 
looking at basically what sometimes our misguided mission had 
been shaped a lot of your positions today?
    Senator Hagel. There is no question that as I have said 
this morning, that my experience in Vietnam very much guided 
the questions. I think I noted a couple of times in my opening 
statement that it was one fundamental question that I always 
asked, was the policy worthy of the men and women that we are 
asking to make the sacrifices?
    I know there are differences of opinion. You mentioned 
Iraq. You mentioned the surge. My positions there were very 
much guided by, well, what is the political purpose of the 
surge?
    Senator Manchin. Right.
    Senator Hagel. Where do we go from here? Yes, you put 
35,000 more American troops in an area for a sustained period 
of time or more on top of more than 100,000 we already had 
there, you will have a tactical victory. But there will be a 
cost for that victory.
    That is what always guided me. Do we understand the costs? 
Are we prepared to make those costs in lives? Then where was 
the bigger answer here? Where were we going with the surge? How 
was this going to take us, advance us to where we needed to go, 
and where did we think we needed to go?
    So, yes, those experiences did shape my questions.
    Senator Manchin. I appreciate that. Let me just say that as 
speaking of now, what we deal with and the concerns that people 
had with your nomination, the support of Israel, I have no 
doubt in my mind your support of Israel as our greatest ally 
and would always be there. I think you have answered that. I 
think we all feel very comfortable with that.
    Also your commitment that Iran should not under any 
circumstance have the ability to have a nuclear weapon, and I 
appreciate that position very much.
    Where we go with the strength of our Army if we have our 
military might in DOD, the National Guard, how does the 
National Guard play in your role of thinking of what they 
should be doing and what they could be doing?
    Senator Hagel. The National Guard now has a chair at the 
table with the Joint Chiefs. General Grass represents the 
National Guard effectively, a new chief. But their role will 
continue to be important, as will the Reserves.
    I think we saw over the last 12 years of war how important 
our National Guard is and the Reserves. We could not have 
conducted those two wars without the National Guard and 
Reserves. I think that has professionalized both Services. They 
are going to continue to be necessary. They are important.
    Their training, their credibility, their leadership, that 
is obviously why the decision was made to assure their 
representation with the Joint Chiefs, and I strongly support 
the National Guard and Reserves.
    Senator Manchin. Personnel, I think that Senator McCaskill 
touched on things I am very concerned about. Every time I hear 
about the sequestering and people tell me that if we do a 
sequestering it could destroy our ability to defend ourselves 
and have the military might that we do.
    Now I don't see that whatsoever, and I followed the 
statistics. I followed all the post-war eras from starting with 
Korea and Vietnam, Cold War, and where we are today. This will 
be the least amount of money that we have asked to draw down 
under any post-war time. But yet everyone is hollering that it 
will be devastating.
    I know there is a way to do that, but the contracting. We 
are having a hard time getting our hands around the 
contracting, the cost of contracting, the ability for people in 
the contracting world to be reimbursed by over $700,000, almost 
twice what the President gets paid. Some of these things, would 
you embrace working with us and sitting down and looking and 
embracing an audit?
    Myself and Senator Tom Coburn have had legislation asking 
for a complete audit of DOD. Your thoughts on those two things, 
sir?
    Senator Hagel. Of course, I will, and as I have noted this 
morning, I am committed to do that. I will do it.
    Accountability is a primary responsibility of any 
institution or organization. That is clearly in the purview of 
Congress. We have to do it. We have to improve on the process.
    We talked a little bit this morning about the astounding 
amount of waste, fraud, and abuse the Inspector General, 
Special Inspectors General both in Iraq and Afghanistan have 
found. I am committed, as I have said, to assure that we make 
that deadline of 2017 on the audits, and I will work with you 
closely on that.
    Senator Manchin. My time is up, and one thing I want to 
state that we talked about in my office is the commitment to 
help our returning veterans get jobs. The Jobs Caucus, ``I Hire 
a Vet,'' it is so important. I appreciate your support for 
that. I look forward to working with you that we can put more 
of our vets back to work when they come home and get them back 
into mainstream America.
    Thank you, sir. I look forward to voting for you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Manchin.
    Senator Fischer.
    Senator Fischer. Thank you, Mr. Chairman and Mr. Inhofe.
    Good afternoon, Senator. It is good to see you again.
    Senator Hagel. Thanks.
    Senator Fischer. I want to begin by thanking you for your 
service to our country and to the State of Nebraska. I do 
appreciate your continued willingness to serve the United 
States.
    But I need to be honest with you. After our meeting last 
week, I still have some concerns about your nomination. Many of 
my colleagues are concerned that you have changed your views, 
and I share that concern. But I must admit that I am more 
worried that your views have not changed.
    From your meeting with me last week, it was clear that you 
maintain the views that have led to so much scrutiny of your 
nomination. Despite these recent claims to the contrary, you 
continue to hold, I believe, extreme views far to the left of 
even this administration.
    In particular, your clear statement to me during our 
meeting that if given the opportunity to recast your vote on 
the Iranian sanctions, you would still oppose those sanctions. 
I believe that indicates that you hold these concerning views.
    Our Nation faces many challenges, perhaps none greater or 
more immediate than Iran's continued progress towards obtaining 
nuclear weapons. At the same time, DOD is entering a period of 
transformation that will likely define its role for many 
decades to come. The future of our nuclear deterrent could 
depend on our choices made by the next Secretary of Defense.
    I am going to bring up the report that we have heard about 
quite a bit. You are listed as a coauthor of that May 2012 
Global Zero report on our nuclear posture. I believe there is a 
recommendation in there, and I believe that the recommendation 
is to drastically reduce the U.S. nuclear forces.
    When we spoke last week, you described this report as being 
authored by General Cartwright. I had the impression, and I 
believe you implied to me, that you weren't closely affiliated 
with it. But you are listed as a coauthor of that report, as 
one of the five coauthors.
    Moreover, you told me at that time that this report 
discussed options. You have reiterated that stance today. But 
after I have reexamined it once again, the only options that I 
have found in the report are related to how best achieve those 
drastic reductions that I believe it advises. There are no 
alternative views or dissenting opinions that are presented or 
discussed in the report.
    It states many controversial opinions. It states them as 
facts in support of its conclusion, and I believe it is 
important to determine whether or not you agree with those 
positions. As it has been said before, my time here is limited, 
and so I would like to quickly go through and review some of 
those more concerning proclamations that it makes with you. I 
would appreciate if we could kind of go through this quickly.
    For example, the U.S. ICBM force has lost its central 
utility. That is stated in the report. Do you agree with that?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, that report was not a 
recommendation. That report, as we have said, was a series of 
scenarios. Again, I use the term ``illustrative'' because that 
was the beginning of the report as possible ways we could 
continue to reduce our warheads. Not unilaterally, but 
bilaterally.
    Every treaty we have ever signed to reduce warheads and the 
thrust capability with the Russians has been about reduction. 
So that is not new. That is where it has always been.
    But ICMBs, your specific question, it is a 25-page report. 
I assume you have read it. It talked about one of the reasons 
ICBMs may well eventually be insignificant because of the 
overflight over Russia and so on. Now those aren't fictional 
analyses. Those are facts.
    Now no one is recommending in that report--and you probably 
know General Cartwright. When he was in Omaha, you probably got 
acquainted with him. These are serious people who understand 
this business, and no one is recommending that we unilaterally 
do away with our ICBMs.
    What that report was about was looking at where this is all 
going. Again, the title of the report was ``Modernizing Our 
Nuclear Strategy,'' not eliminating it.
    Senator Fischer. Correct. But do you agree with the 
statement made in the report that the ICBMs, that force has 
lost its central utility?
    Senator Hagel. That is not what the report said.
    Senator Fischer. I have it--I have it cited, Senator. With 
respect, I can enter that into the record. But it is cited in 
the report.
    Senator Hagel. The report, in the overall context, ICBMs 
and all of the parts of that report were about the utilities of 
our triad, where is this going, and the money that we are 
investing in it, and we have to look at it. I think those kinds 
of reports are valuable to assess our needs, to assess our 
nuclear capability, to assess our nuclear deterrent.
    I mean, we do studies all the time. This was not an 
official report from an official government. Think tanks do 
this all the time. I think that is valuable.
    Now whether policymakers----
    Senator Fischer. Excuse me. I, too, think that reports from 
various organizations--think tanks, individuals, groups--I 
think those are all very important in getting information and 
opinions out there. But when you coauthor a report, I think you 
should be able to answer if you agree with statements that are 
made in the report.
    Senator Hagel. I do not agree with any recommendation that 
would unilaterally take any action to further reduce our 
nuclear warheads on our capability. But again, that is not what 
the report said.
    But I do not agree with that. Every option that we must 
look at, every action we must take to reduce warheads or 
anything should be bilateral. It should be verifiable. It 
should be negotiated.
    Senator Fischer. Every action that this country takes needs 
to be bilateral?
    Senator Hagel. I didn't say that. I said in nuclear 
capabilities in our warheads. When we are talking about 
reducing warheads, as every treaty we have signed with the 
Russians has been bilateral. It has been verifiable.
    Ronald Reagan said it best, ``Trust, but verify''. I think 
that is the key word. He also said, as I said this morning, we 
should wipe nuclear weapons from the face of the Earth.
    I think almost every President has agreed with that, 
including, by the way, this President, who has seen this 
report. World leaders do agree with the continued reduction, 
and this is not a report that is out of the mainstream at all. 
President Obama has said in his Prague speech in 2009 that that 
was his goal, as Ronald Reagan did, as many Presidents did.
    Senator Fischer. Thank you.
    If I could continue on this vein of questioning, please? 
Also, as I read the report, it calls for all U.S. tactical 
nuclear weapons to be eliminated over the next 10 years and 
asserts that their military utility is practically nil.
    Do you agree with that statement?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, I don't believe it calls for that. 
These are scenarios and schedules and possibilities and 
options. But none of this could ever, ever happen unless it 
would be negotiated, bilateral, and verifiable. That was part 
of a letter that the Global Zero growth group sent to the 
President in 2009 specifically stating that.
    If I might give you a more recent example of that. Senator 
Feinstein's subcommittee----
    Senator Fischer. Just a quick one, please.
    Senator Hagel.--had a hearing on this last year. In that 
hearing, and the committee can get the transcript if it doesn't 
have it, General Cartwright and Ambassador Pickering testified. 
They went into this, that this is all, everything with any 
action we would take would have to be negotiated. It would have 
to be bilateral. No unilateral action.
    They made that point again on the record in front of 
Senator Feinstein's subcommittee. I support that. I agree with 
that.
    Senator Fischer. I have another statement from the report. 
The U.S. ICBM rapid reaction posture remains in operation and 
runs a real risk of accidental or mistaken launch.
    I think that statement is pretty clear. Do you agree with 
that?
    Senator Hagel. Yes. I mean, I think accidental launches and 
those kinds of things are always to be concerned about. We need 
to assure, as we have over the years, that that doesn't happen, 
both on the Russian side----
    Senator Fischer. That we run a real risk of accidental or 
mistaken launch?
    Senator Hagel. Well, you take ``real'' out. You could just 
put risk. But there is always a risk. I mean, when we are 
talking about nuclear weapons and the consequences, you don't 
get a lot of second chances. We need to be very sure about 
these things, and I think that was the whole point.
    Chairman Levin. I think you need to save any additional 
questions for the second round, if you would today.
    Senator Fischer. Oh, I am sorry. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. You may not have gotten a card. I am sorry 
if you didn't.
    Senator Fischer. Oh, thank you very much.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you.
    Senator Fischer. Thank you, Senator.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Senator.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Fischer.
    Senator Gillibrand.
    Senator Gillibrand. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Thank you, Senator Hagel, for testifying today.
    I appreciate that you have brought your family with you. I 
appreciate the support of your wife.
    I am going to submit several questions for the record 
because they are important to me as the Senator from New York, 
particularly about New York bases, cybersecurity, and children 
of military families with disabilities. But today, I want to 
focus on the most urgent issues from my perspective. I want to 
talk more about your thoughts on Israel and Israel's security. 
I want to talk about Afghanistan, and I want to talk about 
personnel issues.
    On Israel. Obviously, our relationship with Israel is 
tremendously important to Israel, and we are fundamentally tied 
to them because of being such a strong democracy in the Middle 
East and having our national securities very much being tied in 
many ways.
    We talked quite a bit about Iran, and you have clarified 
your position that containment is not an option. I am concerned 
about a statement you said with regard to Iran. A nuclear Iran 
is an existential threat to the United States, as well as 
Israel. The Iranian Government has been responsible for the 
deaths of U.S. servicemembers, an attempted attack on U.S. 
soil, and the funding, training of terrorist groups.
    Their latest in a long list of direct threats to Israel 
came just today. I want to make sure that in your statement 
earlier today with regard to whether Iran is legitimate, I can 
understand if you meant it is a legal entity that has 
international relations and has diplomatic relations and is a 
member of the U.N. But I do not see Iran or the Iranian 
Government as a legitimate government, and I would like your 
thoughts on that.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Senator.
    What I meant to say, should have said, it is recognizable. 
It has been recognized, is recognized at the United Nations. 
Most of our allies have embassies there. That is what I should 
have said, and thank you.
    Senator Gillibrand. You are welcome.
    With regard to Israel, Israel's security is very important, 
and I have been one of the strongest advocates for our 
alliance, fighting for more increases in missile defense 
cooperation as well as coordination on a number of the 
technology programs that are fundamental to Israel's security.
    Last year, Iron Dome more than proved itself as missiles 
from Gaza continually headed towards Israel. In December, 
Ranking Member Inhofe and I successfully pushed for full 
funding of the U.S.-Israel cooperative missile defense systems.
    Will you personally support robust funding for Iron Dome, 
David's Sling, and other programs? If we have to have a 
Continuing Resolution, the funding for Iron Dome will be well 
below the authorized amount for fiscal year 2013. In such a 
case, will you recommend either reprogramming other funds or 
sending forth an anomaly budget requesting to fully cover our 
commitment to this program?
    Senator Hagel. First, I fully support and will continue to 
fully support Iron Dome and Arrow and David's Sling. As to a 
commitment to the second part of your question, I would have to 
better understand what our restrictions are going to be in our 
budgets before I could make any decisions like that, and I 
would have to talk with our Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and 
each of the chiefs and want to better understand, depending on 
how bad and deep this sequestration might get.
    But make no mistake. It is clearly a priority program. I 
believe we will continue to fund it. We should. I will support 
the continuing funding.
    Senator Gillibrand. I hope you will also be a strong 
advocate because our budget is, even under sequestration, 
significant. This is a very high priority certainly for me.
    Senator Hagel. If I am confirmed, we will work together, as 
I will with this committee, on this and other issues.
    Senator Gillibrand. Thank you.
    A number of members were just in Egypt, and we met with 
President Morsi. Obviously, we are very concerned about the 
Sinai becoming a route for arms coming straight from Libya 
going to terrorist groups. We, obviously, are very concerned 
about we give $1.2 billion to Egypt in aid, and we want to 
figure out if there is a way to put some of those funds towards 
more anti-terrorism missions as opposed to the typical 
technology.
    Do you have any thoughts on that and what we can do to 
really try to assist in cracking down on the weapons trade?
    Senator Hagel. It is a huge challenge and part of obviously 
what allows terrorists, extremists to advance their cause. 
Maritime security, piracy issues, I mentioned in my opening 
statement that is all part of why we need to rebalance 
resources and why we need the kind of flexible, agile resource 
base--in particular our Navy--to be able to do this.
    It also is going to continue to take cooperation with our 
allies. We can't do this alone. As good as our intelligence is, 
the best in the world, best military in the world, we are the 
largest, wealthiest country in the world. But we have to work 
with allies, and we have to find that through intelligence 
before it gets beyond the capacity to be used to do damage 
against the interests of this country and our allies.
    Senator Gillibrand. As Israel is one of our most important 
allies, one of the growing risks we have now is Syria, 
particularly chemical weapons being not properly locked down. 
There is concern, and obviously with what happened yesterday, I 
suspect that there has been very close cooperation between our 
militaries on contingency plans with respect to Syria's 
chemical weapons. But will this be something that you can focus 
your concern on because of your past statements about the 
Israel-Hezbollah war in 2006?
    Is this something that you will also commit to and keeping 
this alliance strong and making sure we have a strong 
contingency plan with regard to any chemical weapons coming out 
of Syria?
    Senator Hagel. Yes. By the way, I have said on the record 
many times that Hezbollah and Hamas are terrorist groups, and I 
have said many times on the record that Iran is a state sponsor 
of terrorism. So, yes, I am committed to do that and will do 
that.
    Senator Gillibrand. Okay. For my last minute, with regard 
to Afghanistan, we have heard your views, and you didn't give a 
specific statement about how many troops when. But will you, in 
your capacity as Secretary of Defense, advise the President 
that we should be drawing down troops sooner rather than later?
    Senator Hagel. I think he has made that pretty clear that 
he wants to do that. If I am confirmed, I will need to better 
understand all the dimensions of this. I don't know all those 
dimensions. I think that there is little question that--and I 
support completely where the President wants to go in 
Afghanistan and his commitment to unwind that war.
    As we have said, there should be, there will be. He has 
noted that he will, in fact, enforce a new policy and new 
relationship based on a limited objective for our troops there, 
and I support that.
    Senator Gillibrand. My last question that I will submit 
more for the record, but you and I talked at length about it. 
Obviously, the personnel of our military is our most important 
asset, and when we hear reports that there are upwards of 
19,000 sexual assaults in the military against women, it is 
unacceptable.
    We also have finally repealed ``Don't Ask, Don't Tell''. 
But it is difficult for a military spouse to even go to the 
commissary and be on base or be notified if a spouse is killed 
in action. I will need a strong commitment from you that you 
will treat our military families and look after them in the way 
you would look after your own.
    I want you to be concerned about every man and woman in the 
military, that their well-being is being looked after, and see 
real advocacy and leadership. Not status quo. Not implementing 
whatever we put forward. But actually fighting for them every 
single day.
    Senator Hagel. You have my complete commitment on that. I 
have made that commitment to, I think, all members of the 
committee that I have spoken to directly and privately.
    Again, I mentioned that point in my opening statement, you 
will recall. I think I have a pretty clear record on that in my 
life. I will continue to do that, will do that, and I agree it 
is not good enough just to say zero tolerance. The whole chain 
of command needs to be accountable for this, all the way down 
to the bottom. So I will.
    Senator Gillibrand. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Gillibrand.
    Senator Graham.
    Senator Graham. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, congratulations on your appointment. You are 
a good, honest man, and I really appreciate your willingness to 
serve the country in the past and be willing to do so in the 
future.
    What percentage of the gross domestic product do we spend 
on defense?
    Senator Hagel. We are, I think, it is probably 5 percent 
now in that area in our budget, our discretionary budget----
    Senator Graham. Is that historically high or low?
    Senator Hagel. I think generally depends on real dollars 
and wars, but--
    Senator Graham. Are we at war?
    Senator Hagel. We are at war in Afghanistan. We are at war 
around the world with active threat----
    Senator Graham. So you agree with me we are at war in 
Afghanistan? We are at war around the world. So when you look 
at spending on defense, every Senator should be aware of the 
fact we are still at war. Do you agree with that?
    Senator Hagel. I am sorry. What is your question?
    Senator Graham. Do you agree that every Senator, every 
Member of Congress should be wide-eyed and understanding that 
when you vote on a defense budget we are at war?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, I do.
    Senator Graham. Okay. Thank you.
    Now let us talk a little bit about statements you made. You 
have explained this a bit. You said, ``The Jewish lobby 
intimidates a lot of people up here. I am not an Israeli 
senator. I am a U.S. Senator. This pressure makes us do dumb 
things at times.''
    You have said the Jewish lobby should not have been--that 
term shouldn't have been used. It should have been some other 
term. Name one person, in your opinion, who is intimidated by 
the Israeli lobby in the U.S. Senate.
    Senator Hagel. Well, first----
    Senator Graham. Name one.
    Senator Hagel. I don't know.
    Senator Graham. Well, why would you say it?
    Senator Hagel. I didn't have in mind a specific----
    Senator Graham. First, do you agree it is a provocative 
statement? That I can't think of a more provocative thing to 
say about the relationship between the United States and Israel 
and the Senate or Congress than what you said.
    Name one dumb thing we have been goaded into doing because 
of the pressure from the Israeli or Jewish lobby.
    Senator Hagel. I have already stated that I regret the 
terminology I used.
    Senator Graham. But you said back then it makes us do dumb 
things. You can't name one Senator intimidated. Now give me one 
example of the dumb things that we are pressured to do up here.
    Senator Hagel. We were talking in that interview about the 
Middle East, about positions, about Israel. That is what I was 
referring to.
    Senator Graham. So give me an example of where we have been 
intimidated by the Israeli/Jewish lobby to do something dumb 
regarding the Mideast, Israel, or anywhere else.
    Senator Hagel. Well, I can't give you an example.
    Senator Graham. Thank you.
    Do you agree with me you shouldn't have said something like 
that?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, I do. I have already said that.
    Senator Graham. Now do you agree with me that Hezbollah is 
a terrorist organization?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Graham. Now, in 2006, you were 1 of 12 Senators who 
refused to sign the letter to the EU asking them to designate 
Hezbollah as a terrorist organization for the purposes of the 
EU sanctioning Hezbollah. Why were you 1 of 12 who refused to 
sign that letter?
    Senator Hagel. Because I have generally had a policy during 
my time in the Senate that I didn't think it was the right 
approach for the Congress of the United States to be sending 
leaders any instructions or any documents versus letting our 
President do that. As I have already stated----
    Senator Graham. Why did you sign the letter to Bill 
Clinton, urging him to deal with the Russians when it comes to 
their policy against Jewish people?
    Senator Hagel. Because I think that is the appropriate 
approach because I think it is our President who conducts 
foreign policy.
    Senator Graham. All I could suggest to you is that when a 
letter is presented to a U.S. Senator about the times in which 
we live in, you can't write one letter and not write the other 
and, in my view, be consistent.
    The letter was urging the EU to impose sanctions on 
Hezbollah, and you have been a big believer that we shouldn't 
go it alone. We shouldn't do it unilaterally. Why in the world 
wouldn't you take this chance to urge the EU to go ahead and 
sanction Hezbollah because it may help the world at large deal 
with this terrorist organization? Your answer is you just don't 
think we should be writing letters?
    Senator Hagel. That wasn't my answer. My answer was I think 
the President of the United States is the appropriate 
official----
    Senator Graham. So Congress has no interest at all in 
whether or not the EU would designate Hezbollah as a terrorist 
organization? Do you think that is our role up here, that we 
should just stay out of those things?
    Senator Hagel. Congress has an interest and responsibility 
in all things. But I----
    Senator Graham. Okay. I got you. Apparently not there.
    Now let me ask you this about the Iranian Revolutionary 
Guard. You said just a minute ago you think they are a 
terrorist organization. Do you agree with that?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Graham. Okay. You voted against the amendment 
designating them a terrorist organization because you thought 
we would be going down the wrong road by doing that because 
they are a recognized state. Iran, you wouldn't want to 
designate the army of a recognized state as a terrorist 
organization?
    Senator Hagel. I said that Iran is a state sponsor of 
terrorism. I also just clarified a statement on Iran being a 
recognized nation by the United Nations, by most world bodies. 
The reason again, I will explain it again, why I did not vote, 
as 22 other members did----
    Senator Graham. Right.
    Senator Hagel.--because I think Jim Webb's argument was a 
strong argument, and that was we have never--this is what he 
said on the floor--designated part of a government as a 
terrorist organization. Thereby what his concern was, as was 
mine and other Senators who voted against it, would this be 
then tantamount to giving the President of the United States 
authority from Congress to take military action against Iran?
    Senator Graham. I got you. Now let me just ask you this. Do 
you believe that the sum total of all of your votes--refusing 
to sign a letter to the EU asking Hezbollah to be designated a 
terrorist organization, being 1 of 22 to not vote to designate 
the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a terrorist organization, being 
one of two on two occasions to vote against sanctions that this 
body was trying to impose on Iran, the statements you have made 
about Palestinians and about the Jewish lobby--all that 
together, that the image you have created is one of sending the 
worst possible signal to our enemies and friends at one of the 
most critical times in world history?
    Senator Hagel. No, I would not agree with that because I 
have taken actions and made statements very clear as to what I 
believed Hezbollah and Hamas are as terrorist organizations. In 
fact, Senator----
    Senator Graham. If you there was a vote on the floor of the 
Senate this afternoon to label the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, 
the people who have killed our soldiers in Iraq, some of the 
most vicious people to the people of Iran themselves, if there 
were a vote tomorrow or this afternoon or after lunch, would 
you still vote no?
    Senator Hagel. Well, I would want to know from the 
President what they were doing, but again----
    Senator Graham. I mean, you read the paper. You watch TV. 
You have any doubt what they are doing? They are expanding 
terrorism. They are trying to intimidate their own people. They 
are the instrument of the theocracy to oppress their own 
people, and they are the biggest supporter of the regime 
keeping them in power so then they can get a nuclear weapon.
    If you had a chance tomorrow, today, after lunch to vote to 
say that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard was a terrorist 
organization, would you still vote no?
    Senator Hagel. Well, the reason I voted no to start with 
began with the same----
    Senator Graham. Well, I know why. You told me that. My 
question is----
    Senator Hagel. That hasn't changed.
    Senator Graham.--would you reconsider, and would you vote 
yes this time, or would you still vote no?
    Senator Hagel. Well, times change. I recognize that, and 
yes, I would reconsider. But the whole theory----
    Senator Graham. Well, thank you. That is encouraging.
    My time is up, but we will have another round.
    Senator Inhofe said that you were one of four Senators who 
refused to sign a letter in October. The first paragraph says, 
``We write to you to express our solidarity with the State of 
Israel at this moment of crisis and our profound disappointment 
and frustration with Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman 
Arafat and the Palestinian Authority. We are dismayed that they 
would allow violence by Palestinians to be carried out without 
restraint or comment.''
    This was when the Intifada was being raging, and Senator 
Inhofe, led by Daschle and Lott, wanted a letter from every 
member of this body to clearly put us on record that we believe 
Arafat and the Intifada is undercutting the agreements they had 
reached and that they had resorted to violence to intimidate 
the Israeli Government and people in a way that was just 
absolutely unacceptable.
    If you had a chance to do it over, would you sign this 
letter now? I am going to give it to you during whatever break 
we have and ask you to reconsider. I would ask you, Senator 
Hagel, to tell the country, the world at large, particularly 
the State of Israel, you made a mistake by not signing that 
letter.
    Senator Hagel. Who is the letter to?
    Senator Graham. I think it goes to the President. Is that 
who it was to? It was the President.
    Senator Hagel. I will look at it. I don't recall the 
letter, and I will look at it and give you an answer.
    Senator Graham. All I can say, it was a very big deal at a 
very important time. The lack of signature by you runs chills 
up my spine because I can't imagine not signing a letter like 
that at a time when it really mattered.
    We will continue this conversation. Thank you.
    [The information referred to follows:]
      
    [GRAPHICS NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]
    
      The four Senators who did not sign this letter are:

          Spencer Abraham, R-MI
          Robert Byrd, D-WV
          Judd Gregg, R-NH
          Chuck Hagel, R-NE

    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Graham.
    We now will go to Senator Blumenthal.
    Senator Blumenthal. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    I want to join, Senator Hagel, in thanking you for your 
service, thanking your family, and expressing appreciation not 
only to you for your service in uniform, but also afterward to 
our veterans, which people may not appreciate as much as they 
do your military service, but I think is every bit as important 
to our Nation.
    I just want to say about that letter, I wasn't here when 
the letter was circulated. I would have signed it, but I would 
certainly join in urging that you reconsider and commit to the 
statement of support in the letter for the State of Israel. If 
it is appropriate now and applicable to today's events, I hope 
you will consider expressing your support for it.
    I noted in your opening statement that no single quote and 
no single vote define you in the entirety, and perhaps not as a 
whole, but votes and quotes do matter. I think that the 
questions about what you have said and what you have done in 
the past are entirely appropriate, and I think also 
reconsidering or your views evolving is also appropriate.
    I am going to be submitting questions on some of the topics 
that you have heard. You and I have discussed some of these 
questions. I might say your private meetings with members of 
this body have been very productive and effective, as you have 
seen in some of the comments that have been expressed here. So, 
the more we hear from you, I think the better you do on many of 
these issues.
    I want to begin by talking about one issue that concerns 
our veterans, and particularly our Vietnam veterans. Many 
Vietnam veterans in Connecticut and around the country received 
less than honorable discharge as a result of conduct that was a 
direct consequence of post-traumatic stress (PTS), at a time 
PTS was not a term, not diagnosed, not treated.
    But they have to live with the consequences of a less than 
honorable discharge. They have to live with fewer benefits 
often. I would like a commitment from you that DOD will 
reevaluate and revisit perhaps some of those individual cases 
as well as its general policies to take account of the fact 
that we now know that many of those veterans during the Vietnam 
era suffered from PTS or related kinds of injuries.
    Senator Hagel. You have my commitment to do everything I 
can about that. I understand the issue pretty well, been 
working on this issue long before I actually ever got to the 
Senate. So I will.
    Thank you.
    Senator Blumenthal. Thank you.
    I would like the same kind of commitment that you have 
expressed very persuasively on the repeal of ``Don't Ask, Don't 
Tell'' on the issue of sexual assaults. This issue bedevils the 
military. I don't know whether you have seen an excellent 
documentary called ``The Invisible War''?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Blumenthal. I know you are familiar with this 
issue. I commend you for what you have said to me privately, 
and I would ask that your commitment not only to the 
prosecution and holding accountable people who are involved in 
this criminal conduct, but also to the victims so that they 
receive the kind of services that in the civilian world many of 
them do through victim's advocates in the courts and similar 
kinds of roles played.
    So both to prosecution--effective, vigorous, zealous--but 
also to protection of the victims. Can you commit to that?
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely, I will commit to that, yes.
    Senator Blumenthal. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Blumenthal. On the strategic issues, I wonder if I 
could talk to you for a moment about submarines, which you and 
I discussed privately briefly. DOD, the Joint Chiefs, and the 
President have all committed to an Ohio-class replacement 
program that consists of a fleet of 12, starting no later than 
2031.
    The Global Zero report settled on a lower number, 10. I 
strongly believe that the cost will increase, the cost per 
submarine, and that we will be at severe risk, for reasons that 
you may well understand, although we can't really discuss them 
in detail here because I think they may be classified. I would 
like a commitment that you are committed as well to a fleet of 
12 Ohio-class replacement submarines.
    Senator Hagel. On that issue, I would want to talk with our 
Chief of Naval Operations to get a better understanding of our 
budget. I can tell you this. I am committed completely to 
modernizing our Navy and everything it includes and will 
require. I will give you that commitment.
    Senator Blumenthal. I am sure you know that the Ohio-class 
replacement program is really the cornerstone of our nuclear 
deterrence.
    Senator Hagel. I do.
    Senator Blumenthal. Vital to our national security, but it 
requires clear leadership and support from the next Secretary 
of Defense. I hope you will perhaps come back to us on that 
issue.
    Senator Hagel. I will. You and I will be discussing this, I 
am sure, many times if I am confirmed. So thank you.
    Senator Blumenthal. Thank you.
    Going to the Virginia-class submarines, the next multiyear 
purchase, known as Block IV, envisions 10 submarines. There is 
a threat that it could be reduced to nine. For reasons related 
to both cost and national security, I think that number should 
be 10.
    The intent and spirit of the last NDAA was that it should 
be 10, and I would like to ask you, similarly, for your 
commitment that there will be 2 submarines for 2014 and that 
the program continues to be viable at the level of 10.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, I will commit to what we have 
committed to carry out what we need to fund and develop and 
build in order to maintain the kind of modern Navy we are going 
to require. Those submarines, as you note, are cornerstones to 
that security.
    Senator Blumenthal. They are absolutely vital cornerstones, 
essential building blocks to our national security as we move 
to the Pacific-Asia theater and seek to advance our interests 
there. They have the intelligence, reconnaissance, and 
surveillance capability as well as, as you well know, 
counterterrorism, the importance. I hope that that effort will 
continue, and I appreciate your commitment.
    Let me just finish with a question that I think goes back 
to the contracting area where you were asked questions before. 
Senator Ayotte and I, in a trip led by Senator McCain, recently 
visited Afghanistan and were briefed--and I am going to try to 
make this question brief--about the continuing corruption in 
the Afghanistan Government. Deeply troubling and even shocking.
    But equally so is the waste of American taxpayer dollars in 
part because of the procedural roadblock to enforcement of 
section 841. I am not going to quiz you on 841. So you can take 
a deep breath there. But 841 is designed to protect American 
tax dollars from corrupt contracts that, in fact, go to benefit 
the enemy.
    We are working revisions that will make more effective the 
procedures for terminating those contracts, getting back 
American dollars, extending those protections to nondefense 
dollars, and I hope that we can have your commitment as well to 
work with us on that area.
    Senator Hagel. You have my commitment, and I will 
enthusiastically work with you on this area.
    Senator Blumenthal. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Blumenthal. I appreciate your frank and forthright 
answers, and I don't know whether I will be here for the second 
round of questioning, but I want to express my sincere 
gratitude to you for your willingness to serve and your 
patience and forthrightness in answering all our questions.
    Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Blumenthal.
    Senator Blunt.
    Senator Blunt. Thank you, Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, thank you for being here today. Thank you 
for your service to the country in so many ways and your 
willingness to serve again. To see your wife and your brothers 
there behind you is an indication of the family commitment as 
well as your personal commitment.
    There are several things that I may get to in a second 
round on Iran and sanctions. I was very involved in that 
unilateral sanctions effort when I was in the House of 
Representatives. We drafted some of that legislation in my 
office when I was in the House.
    Our relationship with Israel is of great concern to me, and 
it is a priority to our efforts in the Middle East. I think 
that is largely exhausted in this first round, at least from my 
point of view. I may want to come back to some of it later.
    I want to talk a little bit about the ongoing structure of 
the force. The Wall Street Journal in an editorial today said 
that the current American military was the smallest, least 
modern, and least battle-ready in recent memory.
    I don't think that means we are not maybe more modern than 
anybody else in the world or more battle ready than anybody 
else in the world. But I think that is a recognition that our 
investment and the way we have used those resources has gotten 
them in a position where we maybe need to be more focused on 
rebuilding than we do building down.
    Secretary Panetta has been very forthcoming in his comments 
about the sort of across-the-board cutting approach of 
sequestration. What do we do to get our worn-out equipment and 
our worn-out personnel in a better position a year from now 
than they are right now? Your brief strategic view of that 
because I don't have very much time here.
    Senator Hagel. Yes. Senator, you have just identified one 
of the priorities of the next few years at DOD. Resetting 
equipment and essentially reshaping our force structure, but 
also renewing our force structure.
    The fact is we have been at war for 12 years. Every Senator 
here knows and you have constituents that we keep sending these 
kids back and back and back to two wars. Of course, there is 
going to be a consequence. Something is going to break down, 
not only your equipment, but your manpower. You can't keep 
doing that.
    So that is going to be an overall challenge, Senator, that 
is going to take as much of my time, if I am confirmed, as 
anything, as it will our Chiefs. Our Chiefs know this better 
than anyone, as we structure, rebalance, renew, and re-outfit.
    We have, I believe, a force structure that is as capable as 
ever. I don't accept that our force structure is somehow behind 
or not modern or not capable. I don't think that is true.
    Senator Blunt. I think the point that the editorial was 
making was not that we were behind, but we are not at the quite 
as far on the cutting edge as we may have been. I would hope 
you and I would both want to see us get there.
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Blunt. Let me ask a question about that. Secretary 
Gates said recently that one of his big concerns was that we 
repeat the mistakes of what I think he referred to as a 
``procurement holiday'' that we took in the 1970s and then, to 
some extent, again in the 1990s. We spent a lot of time in the 
10 years after that trying to get built back up to where we had 
hoped to be.
    How, in these discussions of cutting, do we keep the lines 
open, do we keep our effort ongoing? One of the things that I 
know quite a bit about is the F-18 line because it is in St. 
Louis, MO, where Boeing Military is. I do know that if you ever 
close that line down, we are always talking about, well, what 
other country needs some version of this, and how do we keep 
our capacity at a time when there is this talk about cutting 
and not just cutting, but sort of cutting everything a little 
bit, which means that some of the things that get cut a little 
bit I think disappear because they can't survive if they are 
only partly there.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, you have just again identified one 
of the great challenges that lies ahead, and that is 
maintaining our industrial base. You use the F-18.
    Senator Blunt. There are lots of other lines. That just 
happens to be the one I have been on the most times.
    Senator Hagel. No, I understand. But that is a good example 
of what we are going to have to continue to keep strong.
    The reality is, as you say, because we know what we have to 
deal with, what our budgets are as a result of the Budget Act 
of 2011. What we don't know brings us back to the uncertainty 
of sequestration. Some of the examples you are using are good 
examples of areas that will and can be, could be cut 
arbitrarily in order to fulfill budget requirements.
    I think what you have just noted again is going to be a 
huge part of keeping our technological superiority, our edge. 
Senator Blumenthal mentioned submarines. That is another 
component of this. All the superior technical edge this country 
has possessed since World War II has kept us, along with other 
things and for other reasons, the strongest military power in 
the history of man. That must be maintained.
    Threats change. Cyber is a good example. I mean, 10 years 
ago, nobody had any idea what we were talking about, cyber. 
Even 5 years ago. We have to adjust to that challenge, that 
reality.
    Senator Blunt. Let me see if I can----
    Senator Hagel. The core base, though, Senator, is exactly 
right, and we have to protect that.
    Senator Blunt. We do. We have made efforts with our allies 
and friends to give them some other version of equipment we 
had, maybe not quite as good as we had, but something that 
keeps our defense procurement lines in place so that when we do 
need them, they are still there. That is critically important.
    Before you were designated Secretary of Defense, as the 
potential nominee for this job, in talking about sequestration, 
you made a comment about there is lots of bloat--I am sure you 
have talked about this comment quite a bit and are very 
familiar with it, more than you were before you made it 
probably--in the Pentagon. What do you have in mind there?
    What is being done at the Pentagon that could maybe better 
be done somewhere else or is being duplicated somewhere else? I 
think in some of the follow-up of that, I saw you mentioned 
things that should be in the State Department have gotten over 
to the Pentagon. Are there examples of that that we can work on 
and you will want to lead on?
    Senator Hagel. Two things. First, that comment came in a 
large, extended interview about budgets about everything, and 
that interview was done in 2011 prior to the Budget Control 
Act, just to get the timeframe right on that. I never supported 
sequestration, by the way.
    Now, to your question about what we could do. Obviously, 
much of the conversation here in the last few hours has been 
about acquisition, about waste, fraud, and abuse, billions of 
dollars. Why aren't we auditing these programs? Where is the 
accountability? That is certainly an area that we are going to 
have to take a look at.
    My reference to State Department programs, some of the 
general areas, I mentioned this this morning--where we have 
pushed down on the military the last 12 years to do things that 
usually are done out of State Department, aid type programs and 
exchange programs, helping civilian type programs in areas. 
That was all given to the--not all, but a great deal of it was 
given to the military at the time we were at war in Iraq and 
Afghanistan.
    So the military has taken on a tremendous volume of 
assignments and funding that goes with that. That needs to be 
sorted through, I think. Those are areas where I think we----
    Senator Blunt. One of your commitments will be to help us 
sort through that?
    Senator Hagel. It has to be, Senator. It has to be.
    Senator Blunt. I am out of time, Senator. I will be here 
for the second round.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Blunt.
    Senator Donnelly.
    Senator Donnelly. Thank you, Mr. Chairman and Mr. Ranking 
Member. It is an honor to be part of this committee. I look 
forward to working with my colleagues, and I am proud to serve 
the people of Indiana.
    We are the heartland of America, and Senator Hagel, we have 
over 14,000 members of the National Guard. In our State, we 
have the fourth-largest contingent of National Guard members in 
the entire country. I want to thank you for your service to the 
country, you along with all Vietnam veterans and other 
veterans, for what you have done for our Nation. I appreciate 
your taking the time to meet with me.
    We had an extensive discussion, and your understanding of 
the complex challenges we face in the Middle East and the 
importance of our alliance with Israel. It is a special and 
historic relationship. I believe it is a special and historic 
relationship. The people of my State believe that as well.
    I think it was important for you to let everyone know that 
there can be no nuclear Iran, that there are lines that cannot 
be crossed, and we will stand up and defend our friends and the 
entire world in that area.
    When we were together, I mentioned to you about my visit to 
Crane Naval Warfare Systems in Indiana. What they do is they 
work to create the technologies to control the spectrum, in 
effect, try to win the battlefield before the battle ever 
starts on the ground.
    We were wondering what can be done in this time of 
challenging budgets to ensure that in the area of technology, 
in the area of spectrum, we can maintain our budget so that, as 
I said, before the war is ever started on the ground, we have 
won it on the spectrum level? How critical is that in terms of 
your planning in the Defense Department?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, I think that focus is on as much 
the core challenge that the Pentagon has in front of it as any 
one thing. This committee is going to be particularly important 
to help the leaders of the Pentagon sort through that because, 
as evidenced in the whole series of questions that have been 
asked today, Senator Blunt's most recent questions, this is a 
time of priorities.
    Budgets drive that, but missions should always drive 
everything. What are going to be our missions in the Defense 
Department over the next few years? How are we going to 
resource those missions? What are the priorities going to be? 
It is the entire universe of what the responsibilities are and 
how do we carry those responsibilities out to secure this 
Nation?
    Your general questions and most of the questions asked here 
today have been about this. Until I would get over to the 
Pentagon, if I am confirmed, and understand more of the 
specifics and work with the Chiefs and get a better grasp of 
exactly what we have, I won't be in a position to be able to 
say this or this or we will do this or we won't.
    Obviously, that is why I say this committee, the 
authorizing committees are going to be particularly important.
    Senator Donnelly. My next question probably ties into that 
as well, which is, as I mentioned, we have over 14,000 members 
of the Guard in our State, Army Reserves. They have done tour 
after tour after tour in Iraq and in Afghanistan. As we wind 
down, I think it is critical to make sure that we have a 
strategic plan for the Guard in the future so that the Guard we 
have today, equipment-wise, it is struggling on equipment. We 
have to upgrade not only our vehicles, but in other areas as 
well.
    I guess the question is, how do you view the mission of the 
Guard in the years ahead?
    Senator Hagel. During our conversation and a couple of the 
questions I have had here today on the Guard, I have said I am 
committed to a strong National Guard. It is an essential part 
of our force structure going into the future. I think it was 
proven quite clearly and effectively the last 12 years.
    That will be maintained. I think further evidence of that, 
putting a Chief of the National Guard into the Joint Chiefs. 
You have my commitment that I will be continually focused on 
that integration and the upgrading in every way.
    Senator Donnelly. I have had the privilege of working with 
General Shinseki in recent years on veterans issues, but I 
think back to when he testified regarding Iraq and talked about 
how many troops he thought were needed and all the 
repercussions that came out of that not only for the general, 
but in so many ways.
    I think it is critical that the generals and the people in 
the Pentagon provide you with the most unvarnished information 
possible. They tell you exactly what they think. You tell them 
exactly what you think, and that nobody at any time has their 
career affected for telling you the truth. I want to make sure 
that is the way that you are approaching this as well.
    Senator Hagel. That is the way I would approach it. I value 
that. There is no other way to assure that we are getting the 
best, the most honest advice from our most capable leaders than 
to say it like that.
    The General Shinseki episode was a very unfortunate episode 
in this country, what happened to him for telling the truth. I 
will assure this committee that if I am Secretary of Defense 
that kind of thing will never happen, for a general officer, a 
senior commander to be handled and treated that way when he 
told the truth to the Congress of the United States.
    Senator Donnelly. I will say, and I know you know this, the 
job he has done for veterans as the VA Secretary has been 
extraordinary.
    Another area in regards to not only our veterans, which we 
are challenged with right now, but also on Active Duty, is the 
suicide rate. It has been heartbreaking. In 2012, we lost more 
Active Duty members to suicide than we did in fighting in 
Afghanistan.
    I know General Chiarelli has at this point basically 
dedicated his life to trying to solve this problem. I want to 
make sure that the Defense Department is going to lean all in 
to try to fix this and provide the care and help and answers so 
that that number goes to zero in the years ahead.
    Senator Hagel. You have my complete commitment on this 
issue.
    Senator Donnelly. It is something that our veterans then 
face as well. It is also a transition issue that as much as you 
can work with the VA, as our Active Duties transition out and 
our National Guard when they go home, that they have somebody 
to talk to, somebody to tell how they feel, and somebody who 
understands what they are going through because if we can help 
with that, they have borne the burden of battle, and we owe 
them. We owe them everything.
    Another question I wanted to ask you about is Pakistan. As 
we know, the incredible challenges we have in Afghanistan, so 
much of it is caused by Pakistan. We spent about or provided 
about $2.5 billion in aid. Do you think those were dollars well 
spent?
    Senator Hagel. Pakistan is a complicated relationship. It 
is a nuclear power. They cooperate with the United States on 
some things. We have difficulties with them on others.
    As to your question on investment in Pakistan, we condition 
that assistance. We must continue to condition that assistance. 
I think Pakistan is too dangerous and that area of the world is 
so clearly in the national security interest of this country 
that we just can't walk away from it and not deal with them.
    It is complicated. It is imperfect. But this is where all 
the levers of influence and relationships and diplomacy and 
economics and power come into play. How we wisely use all of 
those resources is going to determine some of the outcomes.
    We have to be honest as well. We are dealing with factors 
there that we don't agree with, that we have difficulties with. 
But again, we have to continue to work at it, and I believe 
that we will and we should.
    Senator Donnelly. Senator, thank you very much.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Donnelly.
    Senator Cruz.
    Senator Cruz. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, I want to thank you for being here, and I 
want to begin by thanking you for your honorable service to our 
Nation, for your personal sacrifice that you have put into 
standing and fighting for this country.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Cruz. I would like to begin by addressing a 
question of process. In your prepared statements today, you 
describe that you have given hundreds of speeches and 
interviews.
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Senator Cruz. This committee asked you in this process to 
submit those speeches in the last 5 years, and in response to 
that, you handed over a total of four speeches. In my view, 
that submission was facially insufficient for this committee to 
assess your record.
    Indeed, your financial disclosure revealed you had received 
paid honoraria in the past year for 12 speeches, and yet you 
did not even hand over those speeches for which you were paid 
substantial sums of money. Beyond that, 2 days ago, 6 Senators, 
including Ranking Member Inhofe, sent you a letter asking for 
financial disclosure. You have not chosen to respond to that 
letter.
    That letter in particular asked about the private 
organizations that have paid you over the past 5 years and the 
degree to which any of those funding sources have come from 
foreign countries, foreign nationals, foreign sovereign debt 
funds. You chose not to respond to that letter.
    In my view, unless and until you respond to the requests of 
members of this committee, this committee does not have a 
proper record on which to assess your confirmation, and I think 
we need full disclosure and adequate time to assess that.
    Now I would like to ask initially a point of clarification. 
With respect to the International Criminal Court, do you 
believe the United States should become a party to the 
International Criminal Court?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, may I quickly respond to your first 
comment?
    Senator Cruz. I would like you to answer my question. My 
time is limited.
    Senator Hagel. That question is one that I am most likely 
not going to be dealing with, as Secretary of Defense.
    Senator Cruz. It is a simple question. Do you think we 
should be a member of the International Criminal Court? I am 
asking for your judgment on whether the United States should be 
a party.
    Senator Hagel. I support where the United States is today.
    Senator Cruz. We are not a party today. You think we should 
not be a party. Is that a correct statement of your position?
    Senator Hagel. That is correct, yes.
    Senator Cruz. Okay. Thank you.
    I would like to draw your attention to an interview you did 
in 2009 with Al Jazeera. With the chairman's indulgence, if we 
can play an excerpt of that interview?
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    Senator Cruz. Now in that excerpt, Senator Hagel, the 
caller suggests that the Nation of Israel has committed war 
crimes, and your response to that was not to dispute that 
characterization, but indeed to describe what he said as, 
``Well, I think that is exactly right.''
    I would like to ask you, do you think the Nation of Israel 
has committed war crimes?
    Senator Hagel. No, I do not, Senator. I would want to look 
at the full context of the interview. But to answer your 
question, no.
    Senator Cruz. The context of that question, we played the 
entirety of it, and I wanted to give you that context so you 
could hear the question and you can hear your response. I would 
suggest that a suggestion that Israel has committed war crimes 
is particularly offensive, given that the Jewish people 
suffered under the most horrific war crimes in the Holocaust.
    I would also suggest that for the Secretary of Defense or 
prospective Secretary of Defense not to take issue with that 
claim is highly troubling. I would also point out in 2006 your 
characterization of the Nation of Israel's action, and that was 
in a speech on the floor of the Senate, you referred to 
Israel's military campaign against the terrorist group 
Hezbollah as a ``sickening slaughter''.
    Now I would suggest the characterizations, do you think it 
is right that Israel was committing a ``sickening slaughter,'' 
as you said on the floor of the Senate?
    Senator Hagel. Again, I would want to read all of it, what 
I said. First, I have said many, many times, Senator, every 
nation has a right to defend itself.
    Senator Cruz. Do you think a ``sickening slaughter'' would 
constitute a war crime?
    Senator Hagel. No. Depends on were they attacked, depends 
on many factors. If Israel was defending itself, there was 
slaughter going on on both sides.
    Senator Cruz. Does one typically characterize defending 
yourself against terrorism as a ``sickening slaughter''?
    Senator Hagel. No, but again, Senator, I would want to look 
at everything because----
    Senator Cruz. Okay. Let us look at another excerpt from the 
same interview, if we can play the second excerpt?
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    Senator Cruz. Senator Hagel, do you think it is appropriate 
for the chief civilian leader of the U.S. military forces to 
agree with the statement that both the perception ``and the 
reality'' is that the United States is ``the world's bully''?
    Senator Hagel. I didn't hear her say that, by the way, of 
the United States, and I think my comment was it is a relevant 
and good observation. I don't think I said that I agree with 
it.
    Senator Cruz. With respect, I think the record speaks for 
itself. It was in writing that she said the United States is 
``the world's bully,'' that it is the reality, and your 
response, you did say you agree with it. You said, ``Her 
observation is a good one. It is relevant. Uh, yes, to her 
question.''
    You explicitly agreed with the characterization of the 
United States as the world's bully, and I would suggest that is 
not a characterization. I think the United States has spilled 
more blood, more treasure standing for freedom, liberating 
people across the world. To go on Al Jazeera, a foreign 
network, broadcasting propaganda to nations that are hostile to 
us and to explicitly agree with the characterization of the 
United States as the world's bully, I would suggest is not the 
conduct one would expect of a Secretary of Defense.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, she said that was an observation.
    Senator Cruz. I will point out that her quote was ``the 
perception and the reality''. With that, my time is expired. I 
look forward to a second round of questioning.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you.
    Now what we are going to do, given the fact that some of 
those tapes there are--they need to be transcribed to be made 
part of the record so that people can judge exactly what was 
said and what was asked. I heard that first question, by the 
way, as a response to the need for moral leadership. I didn't 
hear it the way Senator Cruz did.
    But in any event, it is important that the words be 
transcribed so they can be made part of the record. It is a 
rather unusual thing. I told Senator Cruz that I preferred that 
we have a transcript and that you be asked questions from a 
transcript, but that I didn't want to stop him from offering 
the tape of it, and he went ahead and did it.
    In any event, the fair thing now is that the transcript of 
each of those segments be made part of the record and that we 
give also Senator Hagel an opportunity, should he want either 
on this question or, by the way, on other questions, an 
opportunity to answer for the record in any way he might 
proceed as though he were answering questions for the record.
    Senator Cruz. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    We will be happy to provide a transcript, and we will also 
be making public a link both to these excerpts and to the 
entire transcript so that anyone who wants can view it in its 
entirety and assess it in context.
    Chairman Levin. That would be very helpful. Thank you, 
Senator Cruz.
    [The information referred to follows:]
      
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    Chairman Levin. Senator Hirono.
    Senator Hirono. Thank you, Mr. Chairman and Ranking Member 
Inhofe.
    I join my colleagues in welcoming you, Senator Hagel.
    We live in a complex world, and any Secretary of Defense 
should ask tough questions, maybe not particularly politically 
popular questions. I see you, Senator Hagel, as that kind of 
person, based on your service to our country, your conduct and 
responses to the questions asked of you today, and the 
conversation that you and I had.
    Turning to your statement this morning, you talked about 
looking at our future threats and challenges and why DOD is 
rebalancing its resources toward the Asia-Pacific region. Of 
course, this kind of rebalance is critically important to 
Hawaii in our forward position in the Pacific.
    Would you expand as to why and what particular economic or 
national security factors come into play as we rebalance to the 
Asia-Pacific region?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, you know better than most your 
region and its importance and why it will continue to be 
important to the world, but certainly to the United States. As 
I noted in my opening statement and you know, we have always 
been a Pacific power. We have been a Pacific power because we 
have clear economic interests there. We have diplomatic 
security interests there. We have strong allies there. I 
mentioned some of them in my opening statement.
    When we look at the growth of economies, we look at trade 
growth, we look at population growth, the rise of China. But 
not just China, but that entire Asia-Pacific region, we need to 
stay relevant to opportunities as well as challenges in all 
areas, but in particular the areas that we see as emerging as 
to the largest, most significant economic security issues and 
challenges and opportunities.
    It is appropriate that any nation rebalance assets. You 
have to be relevant to the times, to the shifts, the changes. 
Our world today is totally different than it was 12 years ago. 
Our force structure is being refit, and we are looking at a far 
more agile, flexible force structure as our economies are 
becoming more agile and flexible.
    For all those reasons and more, that is why we are doing 
what I think is exactly the right thing to do. Doesn't mean, as 
I said in my opening statement, that we are abandoning anybody 
or any part of the world. We can't.
    Senator Hirono. Senator, as we live in times of budget 
constraints, will you commit to keeping me and this committee 
informed as you develop the strategies and contemplate force 
posture adjustments that go along with this kind of 
rebalancing?
    Senator Hagel. Yes. I look forward to it.
    Senator Hirono. I am very heartened by your perspective, 
turning to another question, that you always ask the question, 
is the policy working--worthy of the men and women that we send 
into battle and possibly to their deaths? I am very heartened 
by that kind of a perspective from someone who served our 
country.
    What will be your top priorities as you look to care for 
the men and women in uniform and their families?
    Senator Hagel. As I said in my opening statement, the 
welfare, the safety, the success of our men and women in 
uniform is my top priority, has been and will continue to be, 
and their families.
    Senator Hirono. Do you have any specific programmatic ways 
that you will reflect that?
    Senator Hagel. First, to implement the law. We have a 
number of new laws, policies that are in the process of being 
implemented. We have spoken about some here today. I will 
assure, if confirmed, that we do that.
    As I said in my opening statement, we will assure that 
every military man and woman and their families are given 
exactly the same opportunities and rights as each other and all 
members of the Armed Forces.
    Senator Hirono. I also take to heart your belief in the 
importance of the core nation and the work between DOD and the 
VA, and I understand that you have a strong relationship with 
Secretary Shinseki. With your experience as a veteran and 
having been a senior leader in the Veterans Administration, 
what will be your primary challenges and goals as you look to 
collaborate with Secretary Shinseki and the VA?
    Senator Hagel. It will be the same that Secretary Panetta 
and, before him, Secretary Gates initiated in closer 
collaboration between the two agencies, and that means the 
integration of our systems. As our men and women transition out 
from Active Duty into civilian life or retired life and are 
going to require the assistance of some veterans assistance 
programs, a closer integration.
    We know that the backlogs now are still far, far too long 
to get evaluations of whether it is post-traumatic stress 
disorder (PTSD) or whatever the health issue is. I think 
continuing to work with Secretary Shinseki, as Secretaries 
Panetta and Gates did, but strengthening that integration of 
those systems, of leadership, of our people understanding each 
other better, and maximizing the resources that each agency has 
and making those resources more value-added and count more.
    Senator Hirono. I had an opportunity to meet with Secretary 
Shinseki recently, and those kinds of collaborative efforts are 
not happening as expeditiously as we would like. I certainly 
hope that you will have a renewed sense of urgency about the 
outcomes of these collaborative efforts because, of course, the 
bottom line is it is to help our men and women who are 
transitioning out of uniform into civilian life.
    I hope that we have that kind of commitment, strong 
commitment from you for outcomes.
    Senator Hagel. You have my strong commitment.
    Senator Hirono. DOD is the United States' largest consumer 
of energy, and we talked about that briefly when you came to 
see me. It is clear that the military will benefit greatly from 
cheaper, more stable fuel costs over the long term. Promising 
work is being done in this area to commercialize alternative 
fuels that can be produced abundantly in the United States.
    Of course, this kind of collaboration is very important for 
Hawaii as being the most oil-dependent State in the entire 
country. If confirmed, will you continue to emphasize and 
prioritize research, development, and, where possible, 
deployment of renewable fuels as well as enhanced energy 
efficiency efforts to reduce DOD's energy costs over the long 
term?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, as you have noted, DOD is the 
largest user of certainly liquid fuels. But I think our energy 
budget, I don't know the exact number, but it's probably around 
$18 billion a year.
    Anything we can do to make any aspect of securing our 
country more cost effective fuel, we need to look at, and I 
would make that a high priority, if I am confirmed and go over 
to the Defense Department, to see if we could--how we do that, 
how we can continue to do that, because in the end, for all the 
reasons you know, it is just clearly in the interest of our 
country, our resources, and our people.
    Senator Hirono. Certainly, continuing to fund research and 
development efforts in these areas will accrue to us in the 
long term in terms of huge, huge cost savings for DOD.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Hirono. Thank you. My time is up.
    Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Hirono.
    Now here is the situation we have. This first vote is a 10-
minute vote apparently, and all the subsequent votes are 10 
minutes.
    Senator Lee, I am happy to call upon you now, but you would 
have to kind of keep track of this yourself and have your staff 
keep track of it. If you want to take the risk, there may be 
some risk if you took your full 8 minutes.
    I would be happy to recess now instead of after your 
questions. We are going to recess for the five votes. It will 
be about an hour.
    Would you like to start now and then take a chance that you 
might not finish? Or would you rather start at the beginning 
after an hour recess?
    Senator Lee. Thank you for that offer, Mr. Chairman.
    I better not risk the possibility of missing a vote. I 
would prefer that you recess now.
    Chairman Levin. We are now going to recess for about an 
hour. But I want you all to follow this.
    At the last vote--and it may not be the fifth vote. There 
may be four votes. We don't know. It is up to five votes. The 
final vote, though, we know will be called final passage of the 
debt limit bill. We will start, we will begin about 5 minutes 
after the beginning of that vote.
    We will stand in recess. [Recessed.]
    Chairman Levin. The committee will come back to order.
    Senator Lee.
    Senator Lee. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Thank you, Senator Hagel, for joining us today and for 
answering the questions that have been asked to you so far. I'd 
like to talk to you for a few minutes about Israel. Israel is, 
I believe, America's most important ally, certainly in the 
Middle East and in many respects in the entire world. A lot of 
people in this body are concerned, quite appropriately, about 
making sure that alliance remains strong, about making sure 
that our interests as Americans are protected abroad. A lot of 
us feel like one of the best ways of protecting American 
national security is through that alliance in the Middle East.
    On April 12, 2002, there was a Palestinian terrorist who 
detonated a bomb in downtown Jerusalem, killing 6 Israelis and 
wounding I believe about 100 others. On that day, while you 
were still serving in the U.S. Senate, you gave a speech on the 
Senate floor. You made a couple of comments that I'd like to 
discuss with you and ask you a little bit about.
    In one segment of the speech you said: ``We understand 
Israel's right to defend itself. We're committed to that. We've 
helped Israel defend that right. We will continue to do so. But 
it should not be at the expense of the Palestinian people, 
innocent Palestinian people, and innocent Israelis who are 
paying a high price.''
    Some who have read that have reacted with concern that this 
may be indicative of a feeling on your part that there might be 
some moral equivalency between on the one hand Israel's 
exercise of its right to defend itself and on the other hand 
Palestinian terrorism. Do you believe that there is a moral 
equivalency between these two things?
    Senator Hagel. Oh, absolutely not, Senator.
    Senator Lee. Do you understand how others might read this 
statement in such a way that could leave them with that 
impression?
    Senator Hagel. I do.
    Senator Lee. How do you respond to it? In other words, do 
Palestinians, let's say those Palestinians who have engaged in 
acts of terrorism, perhaps in retaliation against Israel for 
Israel defending itself, do they have a legitimate gripe?
    Senator Hagel. Terrorism can never be justified under any 
circumstances.
    Senator Lee. Is their grievance legitimate?
    Senator Hagel. The Palestinians?
    Senator Lee. Yes, the Palestinians who decide to strap a 
bomb onto themselves and detonate it or otherwise engage in 
acts of terror; do they have a legitimate grievance that 
they're expressing?
    Senator Hagel. They have grievances. A lot of people have 
grievances----
    Senator Lee. Are those grievances legitimate?
    Senator Hagel.--but not a justification for terrorism and 
killing innocent people, never.
    Senator Lee. Are they on par with the grievances that 
innocent Israelis have when they become the victims of violent 
acts?
    Senator Hagel. I don't think you can judge whether it's 
Israelis or Palestinians or anybody in the world in separating 
innocent victims of terrorism.
    Senator Lee. I think you can in some circumstances, can't 
you? I mean----
    Senator Hagel. Not victims.
    Senator Lee. For heaven's sakes, though--oh, okay, maybe 
not victims. Can you, and indeed must you not, judge when it 
comes to one group of people who may at least be willing to 
recognize the other group of people's right to exist?
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely. In fact, I'm clearly on the 
record on that point. In fact, in 2006 there was the Anti-
Palestinian Terrorist Act that I voted for, and there are a 
number of other resolutions, acts, votes, speeches I've made. 
In my book I have said unequivocally Hezbollah, Hamas 
specifically, they must renounce terrorism, and first they must 
accept Israel's right to exist as a Jewish homeland, respect 
the borders, protect the borders. Absolutely, I've made that 
very clear.
    Senator Lee. Okay. Now, later on in the same speech you 
asked a question. You referred to the fact, that we really need 
to develop peace in the Middle East, and you asked the 
question: ``Who guarantees this peace?'' You then continue by 
asking another question: ``If in fact we expect Israel to pull 
back to their pre-1967 borders, who guarantees that peace?''
    Does this, Senator Hagel, reflect sentiment on your part 
that that is a legitimate way of solving the peace process, of 
bringing about peace in Israel, in the Middle East, is by 
asking Israel to withdraw to its pre-1967 borders?
    Senator Hagel. No, not at all. What I said was, as you just 
quoted me, who guarantees the security of Israel's borders? 
Israel's borders must be secure. That's part of the 
fundamentals of the Quartet Principles of 2006, in fact, the 
U.N. Resolutions 242 and 337 and other resolutions. That's 
paramount, the guarantee of the security of Israel and its 
borders.
    Senator Lee. I understand that part of the question related 
to how we bring about that peace, and I want to get back to 
that in a minute. But another part of the question started from 
the premise that Israel would be withdrawing to its pre-1967 
borders. Do you view that as a tenable solution? Do you believe 
such borders are militarily defensible?
    Senator Hagel. I think that's all negotiable. The Quartet 
Principles of 2006, which President Bush laid down, and a two-
state solution, all those issues have to be resolved. Land for 
peace, trading land, all those issues are final status issues 
that are absolutely key to the future of Israel or before 
Israel can agree to anything.
    Senator Lee. So you're saying that you might describe a 
resolution of this crisis involving withdrawal to the pre-1967 
borders as perhaps one among several tenable solutions?
    Senator Hagel. It's part of what's been talked about and 
defined in, as I said, the 2006 Quartet Principles and U.N. 
resolutions that that is part of a final status set of issues 
that have to be resolved. The United States and no other 
country can impose that on Israel. That is a negotiable issue, 
but it's been out there, and that remains to be dealt with in 
negotiations.
    Senator Lee. Is it one that you think the United States 
should encourage?
    Senator Hagel. I would encourage peace and a secure, safe 
Israel. That's what I think most of us would want to see.
    Senator Lee. Okay. Now, in 2009 you made a statement 
suggesting that U.S. ground troops should be sent to that part 
of the world and installed as U.N. peacekeepers in a ``non-
militarized Palestinian state''. Is this something you stand 
behind today? Is this an approach that you think is 
appropriate?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, I don't have the facts behind me, 
in front of me, but I don't think that was a recommendation I 
was making. If I recall, my comments--and you may be able to 
give me exactly the comments--were in the context of how do you 
secure Israel's border, who secures Israel's border? For 
example, General Brent Scowcroft has suggested at times maybe 
this is a peacekeeping role for NATO. That was what that was 
all about.
    Senator Lee. Senator, my time has expired. I need to ask 
you one more question. I understand that you have made a 
statement indicating that there is no justification for 
Palestinian suicide bombers, but that there is also no 
justification for Israel to ``keep Palestinians caged up like 
animals''. Did you say that, and if so do you stand by that 
statement today?
    Senator Hagel. I said it, and I don't remember the context 
or when I said it. But----
    Senator Lee. Do you believe today that Israel keeps 
Palestinians caged up like animals?
    Senator Hagel. No. If I had an opportunity to edit that, 
like many things I've said, I would like to go back and change 
the words and the meaning. No, it was I think in a larger 
context. I've said many, many things over many years. It was a 
larger context of the frustration and what's happening, which 
is not in Israel's interest, to find ways that we can help 
bring peace and security to Israel.
    If I had a chance to go back and edit it, I would. I regret 
that I used those words.
    Senator Lee. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Lee.
    Senator Kaine.
    Senator Kaine. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, Mr. Ranking Member.
    Welcome, Senator Hagel. It was good to see you with my dear 
friend Senator Warner, decorated Navy and Marine Corps veteran 
from World War II and the Korean War, Secretary of the Navy, 
long-time member of this committee. You couldn't have a better 
ally than Senator Warner and it was good to see him here.
    He exemplifies--and forgive my Virginia-centrism for a 
minute. He exemplifies something that's very important about 
our Commonwealth. Our map is a map of the military history of 
this country: Yorktown, Appomattox, the Pentagon, where 
Setptember 11 occurred. There's a ceremony in Arlington tonight 
for the commissioning of a new amphib, the USS Arlington, that 
will be commissioned in Norfolk in April.
    We care very deeply about these events. One in nine 
Virginians is a veteran. Not one in nine voters, not one in 
nine adults, but birth to death, one in nine is a veteran. When 
you add in Active Duty, Guard, Reserve, DOD civilian, DOD 
contractor, and their families, now you're talking about 
probably one in three of us. We care very, very deeply about 
all that's within DOD.
    Virginians talk all the time about national security 
concerns and threats. Let me be plain, the threat and the 
concern that Virginians are now talking about more than any 
other is the inability of Congress to find a way forward on 
reasonable budget compromise. That's what's in the newspapers, 
that's what's in the headlines.
    At the direction of Deputy Secretary Ash Carter, DOD is now 
cutting expenditures and planning for future cuts. We have a 
looming sequester on March 1 and then a CR expiration on March 
27. I'm very worried at the macro level about DOD's ability to 
pursue and execute appropriate national security objectives in 
this time of congressional inability to find budget compromise.
    The current CR limits flexibility, for example, of the 
military to appropriately tailor resources to the appropriate 
ends under a CR. The Navy has no flexibility to meet a $3.7 
billion operations and maintenance shortfall.
    I'm new here. To me it seems like funding the military 
through CR is poor business, poor budgeting, poor governance. 
I'm worried about its effect upon the morale of all of our men 
and women in service.
    My first question is a really simple one: Do you agree that 
we, Congress, must finish an fiscal year 2013 appropriations 
process as soon as possible to allow DOD to move forward with 
this year's funding decisions, rather than continuing to be 
bound by an fiscal year 2012 CR?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, I do. I think I've been very clear on 
that point all day today. You have described it accurately.
    Senator Kaine. My second question is related, is about 
sequestration. To me, again the new guy, allowing budget 
sequestration--the cavalier discussions I've seen in some 
newspapers recently by Members of Congress about the fact that 
it's reality and we probably can't change it makes absolutely 
no sense.
    I'm kind of curious and interested to see whether it might 
be more sensible to sort of even realign the deadlines, the 
sequester deadline. We are now, based on the vote we just had 
on the floor of the Senate, in a budgetary process where 
there's a strong likelihood that we'll be able to produce 
budgets together with the House. Why would we be making short-
term one-off decisions that are holdovers from a previous 
Congress that couldn't get it right when we are embarking upon 
a budget process? To my way of thinking, that's the way you 
ought to make revenue and spending decisions, in accord with a 
budget, rather than through gimmicks like sequester.
    I think we're going to get out of this budget uncertainty, 
but when we do you will have the task, if confirmed, of being 
the Secretary of Defense in a resource-constrained environment 
and you're going to have to deal, hopefully in a more 
thoughtful budgetary process with Congress, on how to make 
priorities about spending. I'd like to have you talk a little 
bit about how you would approach that administrative task in a 
resource-constrained world, how you're going to approach that 
task of dealing with these fiscal realities.
    Senator Hagel. First, as I noted this morning in my opening 
statement, if I am confirmed I would intend to make this 
relationship between the Secretary of Defense and Congress a 
partnership, much as Secretary Panetta has done. I think it's 
critically important for many reasons. Let's start with the 
budget. You authorize, you appropriate. The Federal Government 
is captive to that authorization and appropriation, and each 
Department must work within the budgetary framework of those 
resources.
    I have said that, like all of these big issues, it is a 
matter of, first of all, clearly defining the mission in its 
entirety as to what is the mission of DOD, then what are our 
priorities as they fit into our strategic interests around the 
world, and the how do you do it? How do you manage it? How do 
you lead?
    That includes working closely with the Chiefs. That 
includes working with all the leadership within DOD. It's about 
teams, it's about people, and it's about building consensus in 
Congress as well as within the military.
    Each Military Chief has a responsibility for his or her 
areas and Service, and that's as it should be. Obviously, 
Goldwater-Nichols integrated our Services, which was the right 
thing. I think most people agree with that. But also, the 
Commandant of the Marine Corps and each Chief has a 
responsibility to look out for the interests of their Service. 
The coordination of those efforts and the understanding the 
bigger picture are critically important. Those are all 
different elements, not unlike you as a governor at one time, 
would bring to the job.
    Senator Kaine. Senator, switching gears for a minute, it is 
still kind of hard to contemplate that if confirmed you would 
be the first enlisted person to hold the position of Secretary 
of Defense, and I want to ask a question about especially our 
enlisteds. Senator Manchin touched upon it earlier, the 
unacceptably high rate of unemployment of folks exiting 
military service. I think officers have a little bit easier 
time, but when we see an unemployment rate among enlisteds that 
is higher than the national average, when they've sacrificed, 
when they've given, and when they have leadership and technical 
skills that could benefit a civilian workforce, we know 
something is wrong.
    There have been some pilot projects through the NDAAs in 
2012 and 2013 to focus on an issue that matters a lot to me, 
and we talked about it, how to credential Active Duty military 
while they are in their military occupational specialties, 
while they are gaining technical skills, with credentials that 
mean something in the civilian workforce, so that when they 
leave they're not just an E-5 or a gunny sergeant, which people 
in the civilian workforce may not understand, but they actually 
have the credentials that the civilian-hiring workforce does 
understand.
    Are you committed to pushing forward on those pilot 
programs and expanding them so that we can get at this 
unemployment issue?
    Senator Hagel. Absolutely. Again, I noted that in my 
opening statement, Senator. I think I have some experience in 
that area over the years. I'm committed to that. As I said, 
nothing is more important than our men and women and their 
families. That doesn't mean just throughout their time in our 
service to our country, but afterward. What this country 
commits to them, we must fulfill that commitment.
    Senator Kaine. One last comment, Senator Hagel, not a 
question. As the topics have come up today, when we talked 
about Iran and the threat of a nuclear Iran, we've often talked 
about it as linked with Israel's security, which it is. They're 
Holocaust deniers and they've threatened the security of the 
State of Israel. But I want to make sure that everybody in this 
chamber understands it's not just about the security of Israel.
    The Iranian nuclear threat is a much bigger one. It is very 
clear that if Iran gets nuclear weapons that other nations will 
start to do the same thing, and that would cut completely 
counter to I know principles that you hold, principles the 
President holds. It's not just on Israel's shoulders to be 
worried about a nuclear Iran. It is a threat that we all need 
to worry about.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you. I agree. I think, just to add one 
point on that, you all know, of course, and many have been 
involved in this over the years, the current P5 Plus 1 
engagement to get all five members of the U.N. Security Council 
together on this one issue. Now, we have variations of exactly 
what should be done. But I think that gives the world some 
indication of how Russia, China, the United States, and 
essentially all nations of the world view the threat of a 
nuclear Iran.
    Senator Kaine. Thank you, Senator.
    Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Kaine.
    Senator Vitter.
    Senator Vitter. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Thank you, Senator, for being here, and thank you very much 
for your military service.
    My single biggest concern, Senator, about the nomination is 
the dramatic flip-flops between your past statements and record 
and what you're saying as the nominee. They're about key core 
issues, and we've discussed some of those today. I wanted to 
focus on that, and I apologize if I go over some of the things 
that have come up before. I couldn't be here for most of the 
hearing.
    In 2006, when Israel was responding to attacks by Hezbollah 
from Lebanon, you called that response a ``sickening 
slaughter'' and you accused Israel of ``the systematic 
destruction of an American friend, the country and people of 
Lebanon''. What do you say about those quotes today?
    Senator Hagel. Well, first, I said them. I've been asked 
about them. I have said I regret saying that. It was in the 
larger context of a speech I made about what was going on, the 
30-some days of war going on. I also included in that speech 
the responsibility of Hezbollah, who started the war. So it 
wasn't exactly the way you just noted it. The language is 
exact, what you just said, but it was a larger context.
    Yes, I regret that language. But I think the bigger point 
is, Senator--and I have noted this all morning--my unequivocal 
support of Israel over the years. There's been no flip-flop on 
that. How I've voted, I've never voted against anything but 
Israel's interests in every vote I've cast in the U.S. Senate. 
I've said it in my book. They're a special, historic ally. We 
will always support them and defend them. I've said it in my 
speeches.
    There's no flip-flop on my support for Israel.
    Senator Vitter. Is there a flip-flop on your calling their 
response to Hezbollah ``the systematic destruction of an 
American friend, the country and people of Lebanon''? Do you 
stand by that today?
    Senator Hagel. I just said I said that, and I said that I 
regretted saying that. But that's not----
    Senator Vitter. Do you stand by those words, or is that a 
flip-flop?
    Senator Hagel. No. If I had a chance to edit those words 
out, I would.
    Senator Vitter. That's what I'm talking about in terms of 
flip-flop.
    Senator Hagel. I suppose if I had a chance to edit a lot of 
things in my life, Senator, I'd probably be fairly busy.
    Senator Vitter. Let me move on because I have a number of 
these concerns. In 1998, in a Senate hearing, you said that 
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright had ``tilted way too far 
toward Israel in the Middle East peace process''. Do you still 
think that of that peace process in 1998?
    Senator Hagel. I don't recall the event. I don't recall the 
words. I don't know where it comes from. I don't know the 
context. Again, Senator, I go back for years and years and 
years on different things I've said, but I don't recall that or 
what the context was, so I don't know.
    Secretary Albright has endorsed me, by the way, to be the 
next Secretary of Defense. I worked very closely with Secretary 
Albright, as I did with President Clinton and his 
administration, in support of Israel.
    Senator Vitter. In general, at that time under the Clinton 
administration, do you think that they were going ``way too far 
toward Israel in the Middle East peace process''?
    Senator Hagel. No, I don't, because I was very supportive 
of what the President did at the end of his term in December-
January, December 2000, January 2001. As a matter of fact, I 
recount that episode in my book, when I was in Israel.
    Senator Vitter. Just to clarify, that's the sort of flip-
flop I'm talking about, because that's what you said then and 
you're changing your mind now.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, that's not a flip-flop. I don't 
recall everything I've said in the last 20 years or 25 years. 
If I could go back and change some of it, I would. But that 
still doesn't discount the support that I've always given 
Israel and continue to give Israel.
    Senator Vitter. Let me go to a third thing, is actually 
what you said today, talking about Iran as a ``legitimate 
elected government''. Do you think the election that had to do 
with this Iranian Government coming to power was free and fair 
and legitimate?
    Senator Hagel. I noted that the term ``legitimate'' was not 
the term I should have used. I should have used ``recognized''. 
That's the more appropriate term. I was referring to the fact 
that it's a nation that is a member of the United Nations, it 
has embassies from all our allies.
    Senator Vitter. What about the----
    Senator Hagel. It's a recognized nation.
    Senator Vitter. What about the word ``elected,'' because 
you said ``legitimate elected government''?
    Senator Hagel. There was an election in Iran.
    Senator Vitter. So my question specifically was, you 
apparently think that was a free and fair and legitimate 
election?
    Senator Hagel. That's not what I said.
    Senator Vitter. That's why I'm asking what you meant, 
because you said ``legitimate elected government''.
    Senator Hagel. I just explained I should have said 
``recognized'' instead of ``legitimate,'' which I did earlier 
today. There was an election. There will be another 
presidential election in June of this year for President of 
Iran. Whether it's free and fair, I don't know.
    Senator Vitter. Do you expect it to be free and fair and 
legitimate?
    Senator Hagel. I don't know.
    Senator Vitter. Okay. You have no expectations one way or 
the other about that?
    Senator Hagel. I do know that Iran is not exactly a model 
democracy and it has not been. I don't have any expectations 
for a free, fair election.
    Senator Vitter. Okay. In 2008, you wrote that a nuclear 
Iran might be tolerable because ``sovereign nation states 
possessing nuclear weapons capability, as opposed to stateless 
terrorist groups, will often respond with some degree of 
responsible, or at least sane, behavior''. Is that still your 
hope or expectation about this Government of Iran?
    Senator Hagel. Again, I'm not sure where the reference came 
from or the context. But what I obviously was referring to were 
different options that people will look at in regard to Iran 
getting nuclear weapons. I've always said that Iran must not 
get weapons of mass destruction. I've always said it's a 
sponsor of terrorists, of terrorism, and I've always said the 
military option should remain on the table to assure that Iran 
does not get nuclear weapons.
    Senator Vitter. Again, this quote, you suggest that Iran 
would maybe or hopefully respond in a ``responsible, or at 
least sane,'' way. Those were the words. Is that still your 
expectation or hope?
    Senator Hagel. I always have hope that people respond in a 
sane way. But that doesn't at all change the facts that it is a 
dangerous, dangerous country that's a threat to the United 
States, Israel, and the entire world.
    Senator Vitter. Okay. After your nomination, the Iranian 
Government press noted with satisfaction that the ``anti-
Israel'' Hagel--obviously, that's not your quote; that's 
theirs--is known for ``his criticism of Washington's anti-Iran 
policies,'' and that he ``has consistently opposed any plan to 
launch a military strike against Iran''. Why do you think they 
have that impression?
    Senator Hagel. First of all, it's not an accurate quote. 
I've never opposed military action against Iran.
    Senator Vitter. Let me just clarify. It's an accurate quote 
of the Iranian Government press. Why do you think they have 
that impression?
    Senator Hagel. It's not an accurate statement about my 
position.
    Senator Vitter. Right. But why do you think they have that 
impression?
    Senator Hagel. As I said in answer to that question 
earlier, I have enough difficulty understanding American 
politics, Senator. I surely don't understand Iranian politics.
    Senator Vitter. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. But if I might add, I also said that there 
have been some rather significant Israeli Government leaders 
recently that have said some pretty nice things about me, 
current Israeli leaders.
    Senator Vitter. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Vitter.
    Senator King.
    Senator King. Like all the other inquisitors today, 
Senator, I want to thank you for your service, and particularly 
for your willingness to put yourself through this process to 
serve your country once again. It's one of my life principles 
never to take a job where I would have to be confirmed by a 
legislative body, and you're doing it.
    I also want to comment, I read one commentator that said 
the fact that this guy was an enlisted man in Vietnam is nice, 
but not really significant. I think it's very significant. I'm 
a bit of a student of the Cuban missile crisis, the most 
dangerous moment this country has ever experienced, and anybody 
that studies that period, it's hard to escape the conclusion 
that President Kennedy's service on the front lines of World 
War II and Chairman Khrushchev's service in his army during 
World War II was a significant influence on their willingness 
to back away from the nuclear precipice. I think it's very 
important to have people with your experience in this position.
    Most of the questions, probably 90 percent, today have been 
about policy. But the reality is, as I think you would concede, 
that the policy comes from the President of the United States. 
You're certainly going to advise, but that's where the policy 
comes from. I'd like to ask your thoughts about management, 
because you're about to take on the world's most cumbersome 
bureaucracy, with a lot of problems and headaches and budgetary 
challenges.
    Just share with me some thoughts about how you're going to 
approach the management of DOD?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, thank you. I note you were sitting 
there during the exchange I had with Senator Kaine about some 
of this, and I would, in answering your question, pick up on a 
couple of those observations.
    First--and you too, I know, you were a Governor. So you 
both understand a lot of the pieces of this. No matter how big 
an organization is, there are still some fundamentals to 
leadership and management. Now, as you have noted, DOD is the 
largest institution certainly in this country, maybe the world. 
How then do you try to manage it? Well, it's not about me. The 
Secretary of Defense, he leads, he advises the President. But 
it's really about the people who have the accountability and 
the responsibility to manage every aspect of our defense 
apparatus. That includes all the officers. I think there are 
over 50 presidential appointees in DOD. You have obviously the 
military, uniformed military, 1.3 million there. So all of 
these people are required to manage the Department.
    I think a fundamental to me in answering your question is 
accountability. We've had some discussions today about audits. 
All institutions must be accountable. Elected officials are 
accountable. We're all accountable. The emphasis on 
accountability I don't think can ever be overstated. You give 
managers flexibility, you give them resources, but you give 
them direction and expectations, and they have to be very 
clear, very direct, and very defined, but not to the point 
where you don't want their input and their ability to be 
flexible with their management. I think that's, in my opinion, 
Senator, is the key to anything, but surely it is the key to 
something as large as DOD.
    A number of questions were asked of me today about specific 
programs, submarine programs, different areas of technology and 
acquisitions, and our superior technology. I've said I don't 
know enough about it. I don't. There are a lot of things I 
don't know about. I, if confirmed, intend to know a lot more 
than I do. I will have to.
    But at the same time, I would never think that this, as I 
said earlier, is about me or I will be running anything. I will 
be the leader, I'll be responsible, I'll be accountable. But I 
have to rely on the right teams, the right people, bring those 
people together. Again, it's accountability and responsibility.
    I would stop there, if that gives you some sense of how I 
would intend to do this business.
    Senator King. My theory of leadership is hire good people 
and take credit for what they do. That's my best advice.
    You're a guy from Nebraska. You were in the Army. I'm 
imaging that every morning you don't get up and think about the 
Navy. I hope to correct that over the next few years. 
Particularly of concern to us right now in Maine and in other 
parts of the country is the multi-year procurement program 
which is in jeopardy because of the budget situation.
    Your feelings about multi-year procurement and maintaining 
the industrial base, which we just have to do if we're going to 
be able to maintain our force?
    Senator Hagel. Governor, you probably know, and Governor 
Kaine does as well, that there is such a thing as a Nebraska 
navy. Our governors make these distinguished appointments 
throughout their career. Our fleet is small but mighty. But 
that has been my initial, early on experience with the Navy.
    Industrial base, I referenced that in a couple of comments 
I made earlier today in responding to questions. Absolutely 
essential to our future that we maintain a strong, growing, 
credible military industrial base, for all the reasons you 
understand. Certainly Senator Kaine does, being from Virginia, 
and other Senators here who have in their States these 
facilities and, more importantly, private companies that 
represent our industrial base.
    How we then prioritize our needs, how we account for and 
audit contracts, forward procurements, cost overruns, waste, 
fraud, and abuse, all part of it. This is going to be more and 
more essential as we are dealing with, as you have noted, a 
restricted budget. It may be a very restricted budget, 
depending on how things happen on sequestration.
    The Navy is an indispensable part of our security 
apparatus. First, it is the one visible projection of power 
that we have in the world. Obviously, our rebalancing of 
resources in the Asia-Pacific region are some indication of 
that. The Persian Gulf; we have been talking all day about 
Iran, about Israel, but specifically Iran in the Persian Gulf. 
You know we have our Fifth Fleet there in Bahrain. We have two 
carrier battle groups in and out of that small little area. The 
flexibility, agility, missile defense, nuclear, all those 
capabilities are within the Navy.
    I am a strong supporter of advancing our Navy technology 
and our efforts, and I will continue to do that if confirmed.
    Senator King. Thank you, Senator. I'll have some more 
questions at a later time. I appreciate it.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator King.
    Senator Shaheen.
    Senator Shaheen. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, thank you very much for the tremendous 
service that you've already provided to this country and for 
your willingness to consider taking on this challenge as 
Secretary of Defense and for your stamina at this hearing all 
day. You will certainly need it as Secretary of Defense.
    I want to follow up on Senator King's question about the 
Navy, because the Navy is obviously very important to us in New 
Hampshire as well. Our four public shipyards are the backbone 
of our naval power, but according to the Navy there's a huge 
backlog of the restoration and modernization projects at our 
shipyards. According to last year's numbers, that backlog was 
around $3 billion.
    At Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, which Senator King, Senator 
Ayotte, and I are all very concerned about, that number was 
$513 million. This backlog not only potentially affects our 
readiness, but it's also not cost effective. For example, a 
2010 Government Accountability Office report pointed out that a 
pier project at Norfolk, which I'm sure Senator Kaine is 
familiar with, if it had been addressed early it would have 
cost $15 million. Because that didn't happen, the pier now is 
going to cost about $85 million.
    In fiscal year 2012, Senators Collins, Ayotte, and I 
included an amendment in the NDAA bill that requires the 
Pentagon to produce a shipyard modernization plan to address 
these shortfalls. That report's late, but it was promised in 
the upcoming budget submission for fiscal year 2014. Will you 
commit to ensuring that this modernization plan is produced and 
will you commit to pressing the Navy, within the fiscal 
constraints that I appreciate, but to fully fund the 
investments that are needed to save money in the long term and 
ensure that we continue to be very effective and efficient at 
our shipyards?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, I will make that commitment to do 
everything I can to first understand the specifics, which I 
don't know all the details. But your request is preliminary to 
effective, efficient use of our resources and planning and our 
national security. So I will make that commitment. If I am 
confirmed, I will get the details. I will assure that the Navy 
responds.
    Senator Shaheen. Thank you. I'm sure Senators King and 
Ayotte join me in inviting you to come and visit the Portsmouth 
Naval Shipyard. We hope that you will do that as soon as you're 
confirmed.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator Shaheen. I know there's been a fair amount of 
discussion earlier today about your involvement with the 
organization Global Zero and what your position is on nuclear 
weapons. I think it's worth requoting what Senator Reed said 
about Ronald Reagan, who said that: ``We seek the total 
elimination one day of nuclear weapons from the face of the 
Earth.'' I think every President since Ronald Reagan has 
supported that aspirational goal, recognizing that at this 
point in time it is a goal.
    Certainly that's what President Obama has said he supports, 
is that some day, probably not in this lifetime, but some day, 
we should hope for a world that would be free of nuclear 
weapons.
    I know I've heard you say that you agree with those two 
statements, but do you also agree that as long as nuclear 
weapons exist that we have to maintain a safe, secure, and 
effective nuclear arsenal to deter any adversaries?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, completely, absolutely. I have never 
had any other position but that, as I have indicated this 
morning and this afternoon, and will continue to take that 
position. As I said in my opening statement and in answer to 
other questions, our nuclear deterrent has probably been the 
core of keeping world peace and avoiding a World War III, that 
nuclear deterrent.
    As long as there is the threat of nuclear weapons--and like 
you noted and President Obama noted in his Prague speech in 
2009--it probably will not happen in our lifetime. But, just as 
you noted and Senator Reed's comments about what President 
Reagan laid on the table in 1986, we need to keep working on 
it. We need to keep moving forward, attempting to do it.
    Quite frankly, if you look at the START agreements and you 
look at the different treaties we've had, we have brought those 
warheads down, under both Republican and Democratic 
administrations, bipartisan. What Sam Nunn said this morning, 
he and his former colleagues Secretary Kissinger, Secretary 
Shultz, Secretary Perry, hundreds of national leaders in 
Republican and Democratic administrations over the years have 
supported the reduction of weapons of nuclear destruction--not 
unilateral, but bilateral, negotiated and verifiable.
    As I said this morning, as Ronald Reagan said, ``Trust but 
verify''. Nothing unilateral.
    Senator Shaheen. Thank you very much.
    Again, I know there's been a lot of discussion about your 
comments relative to sanctions on Iran and various options that 
we might pursue with respect to Iran and nuclear weapons. But I 
wonder again if you would confirm what your position is on the 
President's current strategy of strong diplomacy, tough 
international sanctions, and keeping all the options on the 
table?
    Senator Hagel. You have just defined President Obama's 
strategy on Iran, which I firmly support, strongly support. It 
is the wise way to do it. I don't know if I mentioned this to 
you in our meeting, but I wrote a book in 2008 and I have a 
chapter on Iran, and I lay all that out in the chapter. As I've 
said, I don't think President Obama went to my chapter and 
developed his strategy based on my chapter, but there's nothing 
in that chapter that I wrote in that book in 2008 or anything 
I've ever said that deviates from where the President is.
    The military option is always on the table, must be on the 
table, always should be the last option, always the last 
option. But aren't we wiser and smarter if we can figure this 
out, accomplish our objectives, without having to go to war, 
for everybody?
    Senator Shaheen. I hope so.
    You referenced the meeting that we had last week and I very 
much appreciated your taking time to come in and sit down and 
talk about some of the statements that have been represented 
that you have addressed today. One of those had to do with 
Israel's security. Again, I know this has been discussed at 
length during the day today, but I wonder if again you could 
reconfirm what your commitment is on Israel and the security of 
Israel in the Middle East?
    Senator Hagel. My support of Israel's security is and 
always has been very clear. I strongly support Israel. The 
security of Israel is a commitment that we made to Israel in 
1948 when Israel was born under American leadership, President 
Harry Truman. That commitment is a bond that is more than just 
an ally to ally. It is special, it's historical, it's values-
driven.
    I've never equivocated from that line. My votes in the 
Senate have shown that. What I've said publicly has shown that. 
I've said this in my book. Absolutely, and we'll continue to do 
that.
    Senator Shaheen. Thank you very much.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Shaheen.
    Okay, we're going to have a 5-minute second round, and if 
we need a third round we will have a third round. I'm going to 
try to take less than 5 minutes so I can yield a couple 
minutes, if I still have them, to Senator Inhofe.
    Senator Inhofe. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Earlier today, Senator Hagel, one of my 
colleagues made a statement that you had not responded to 
requests for copies of all your speeches and to requests about 
contributions to certain organizations I believe that you 
either served or had spoken to, and that you didn't have the 
opportunity at that time to respond to that statement. I want 
to give you the opportunity now, if you wish to, or if you 
prefer to respond for the record.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I will respond for 
the record. But I will take this opportunity to respond. First, 
as far as I know--and I asked again at the break of our 
counsel, Ethics Office lawyers, have we responded to all 
requests or are we in the process of responding to every single 
request? The answer is yes. Some of these requests didn't come 
in until yesterday, specifically the financial documentation 
request. Copies of my speeches came in late.
    We have given the committee every copy of every speech that 
I have that's out there, every video that I have that's out 
there. On paid speeches, most every one of those paid speeches, 
in the contract it says that they are private and not 
videotaped. That wasn't my decision; that was the contract of 
the group I spoke to. I believe every paid speech I gave I 
didn't have a prepared text. I gave it extemporaneously, which 
is something I've been doing for long before I left the Senate.
    We are fulfilling every legal commitment I said and I am 
obligated to, and I've complied with every ethical request. I 
always have. I did when I was in the Senate. I'll continue to 
do it now. We are doing it now.
    Chairman Levin. There was one or two other times when you 
did not have the opportunity to reply to a question and, in 
order not to use up all my time, you should feel free to do 
that for the record. We're going to keep this record open until 
close of business tomorrow for questions and for your answers 
until close of business Monday, which means 5 p.m. tomorrow for 
questions for the record, 5 p.m. on Monday for your responses 
to questions for the record.
    At that time, would you give us the update on any 
additional documents, speeches, or information that you have 
been requested to provide which you have not yet been able to, 
but is in the works, so you can give us an update?
    Senator Hagel. I will. Again, I have committed and will 
continue to commit to complying with every legal document, 
legal requirement.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you.
    I hope I have a minute or 2 that I can then yield to 
Senator Inhofe.
    Senator Inhofe. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate that 
courtesy very, very much. I'm going to have to hurry this up a 
little bit because it's less time than I thought we had, I say 
to my good friend.
    It was mentioned that one of the members up here thought I 
was being disrespectful during the time that I was questioning 
you. It was at a time when I made the statement that you have 
been endorsed by the ministry of Iran for your nomination to be 
Secretary of Defense. Do you consider that to be a 
disrespectful notion on my part?
    Senator Hagel. No, it's a legitimate question.
    Senator Inhofe. Thank you very much.
    I have kind of been the leader on postponing any further 
Abrams tanks or F-16s to Egypt until such time as that 
government is under control. This is my own statement, only 
representing my own thoughts. I think Morsi's an enemy. I think 
their military is a friend.
    There was a vote just a little while ago to do away 
permanently with the sending of any of this equipment to Egypt. 
I don't think that's a good idea. What I think is a good idea 
is to continue to use that as leverage. If you do that, you 
lose the leverage. I believe that right now, Morsi has already 
distanced himself from the military. To me that's a first good 
step, and I would like to think that we could reinstate a 
friend in that area.
    I would only ask you, would you agree with my statement 
that I came out with a long time ago or my bill that I 
introduced, I should say, and I re-introduced in a stronger way 
today, saying that we would withhold sending this equipment to 
Egypt until such time as these conditions are met? I mentioned 
the conditions of keeping the accords from Camp David and that 
type of thing. Would you consider that?
    Senator Hagel. First, that's a policy decision that the 
President of the United States would make. If he asks for my 
advice I would certainly give it to him. But to the bigger 
question, I think it is important that our assistance to Egypt 
be conditional. They play an absolutely critical role in 
fulfilling the commitments of Camp David for the security of 
Israel and elsewhere.
    Senator Inhofe. I'm sorry to interrupt you, but we're 
almost out of time right now. I appreciate that answer.
    You made one statement that I strongly disagreed with. You 
said that President Obama has been the strongest Israeli 
supporter since 1948. I have a hard time with that. I know that 
he's not up for confirmation; you are. But when you see 
statements coming out of the administration like, ``The United 
States believes that negotiations should result in two states 
with permanent Palestinian borders with Israel and Jordan and 
Egypt,'' and they come out with the statements like, ``We 
believe the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on 
the 1967 borderlines,'' these are statements I think are very 
damaging, and I can assure you that the leadership over in 
Israel feel that those statements are damaging.
    Do you still feel that President Obama has been the 
strongest supporter of Israel since 1948?
    Senator Hagel. I do, and I will tell you very quickly why. 
First of all, the 2006 Quartet Principles that President Bush 
laid down I think cover most of the points that you've made, 
and I supported President Bush then and still do, what he did 
in developing those principles.
    But when you look at the assistance this administration has 
given to Israel, the most significant and largest military-to-
military exercise, Austere Challenge, Israeli-U.S. forces last 
fall, the additional moneys that we put into Iron Dome, the 
President's position, we have your back----
    Senator Inhofe. I've answered the question. That's fine. I 
appreciate it.
    Senator Hagel. I think it's hard to----
    Senator Inhofe. But one other subject before we run out of 
time here, and it's one that I know you're very interested in. 
You actually were a co-sponsor of the Missile Defense Act of 
1999 and I was, too. So we agreed. Times have changed since 
that time. At that time people thought having the capabilities 
was confined to the Soviet Union at that time, or Russia, and 
the United States. A lot has happened since then.
    I often say that one of the things I disagreed with most in 
the first budget that this President had was when he did away 
with the ground-based interceptor site in Poland. I think most 
people are aware that was built for protection of Western 
Europe and the Eastern United States. I'm satisfied that we 
have, even with the reduction of ground-based interceptors on 
the west coast, which I disagreed with, but I still think we 
have adequate protection on the west coast. It's from the east 
coast, and right now our intelligence still says today that 
Iran will have the weapon capability and the delivery 
capability by 2015. That's why it was supposed to be there.
    Now there's a discussion saying to cover that void we need 
to have a third site. Do you support a third site of ground-
based interceptor? It would be on the east coast somewhere.
    Senator Hagel. I'm aware of the NDAA authorization and 
instruction for a third site and an environmental impact 
statement. I don't know enough of the details. If I am 
confirmed and go over there, I will get into it. But to respond 
to that, which I will for the record, I just don't know enough 
about it.
    Senator Inhofe. Okay, if you'd respond for the record. I 
think it's very significant and I think that most people are 
looking at this with this void. You have a period of time 
between 2015--nobody disputes the capability that Iran will 
have at that time. It's not even classified. But there is still 
a void of about 6 years between that and when we would have the 
capability to knock down what has to be knocked down unless we 
have a third site in place. I am hoping that maybe for the 
record you'll come back and say that you support the third 
site.
    [The information referred to follows:]

    If confirmed, I will work to ensure that the analysis Congress 
requested in section 221 of the National Defense Authorization Act for 
Fiscal Year 2013 to evaluate additional missile defense locations in 
the United States, including on the east coast, will be delivered on a 
timely basis, and that Congress remains informed about the Department's 
analysis about how to best protect the U.S. Homeland.

    Senator Inhofe. The last thing I'll mention, if you'll 
forgive me, Mr. Chairman, when Senator Hirono talked to you she 
talked about your efforts and her expectations on your being 
involved in using DOD for all these environmental things. I 
would suggest to you that's why we have a Department of Energy. 
When I asked you the question, will you refrain from doing some 
of the things that have been done in the past in this 
administration, such as forcing the Navy to pay $26 a gallon 
for 450,000 gallons of fuel that you could buy for $3 and other 
things, it's billions of dollars that we're paying which we 
could be using for warfighting. I see an inconsistency in your 
answer to me and your answer to the Senator from Hawaii.
    Senator Hagel. My answer to the Senator from Hawaii was, I 
believe--they can read it back--that I am committed to all 
efficiencies that we can find in DOD which are in the interest 
of our country. I didn't commit to any one program.
    Senator Inhofe. Or any program that would be a costly 
program on experimentation, such as the programs that I've just 
mentioned, clearly are in the jurisdiction of the Department of 
Energy and they're the ones supposed to be doing it. Don't you 
agree that we should be confining ourselves to enhancing our 
warfighter capabilities?
    Senator Hagel. Well, of course. But I think within that 
realm certainly the kind of money that we spend, as you've 
noted, on fuel, that should include some not only sense of 
that, but are there things that we can be doing with our 
research and technology in DOD, why wouldn't we? It just seems 
to make sense.
    Senator Inhofe. Yes, we should as a government, but that's 
what the Department of Energy is supposed to be doing. When you 
said, as you suggest, the high cost of fuel, yes, it's a high 
cost because we're paying 10 times as much as we would have to 
pay, money that we could be putting toward our warfighting 
efforts. That's my point.
    Senator Hagel. Yes, I agree, but why wouldn't we be looking 
at all options if we have the kind of sophisticated research 
and technology that DOD does and has possession of? Why 
wouldn't we be enlarging that? I don't know anything more 
specific to or central to our security than energy.
    Senator Inhofe. I know my time has expired. We're spending 
literally millions, actually some billions of dollars, on some 
of these experimentations that again are not in the purview of 
this. Right now we're stalling 179 F-35s that we just recently 
are putting off. I always say that if they put them off 
indefinitely, that's just a cut; it's not a put-off. Those are 
things that we should be doing right now.
    We're looking at the Ohio-class sub. We should be doing 
that right now, but we've postponed it. If we were to spend the 
money that we're spending on the environmental causes on 
warfighting, I think it would do us better good. Apparently you 
don't agree with that.
    Senator Hagel. I've said what I said, but I will commit 
this to you, Senator, that, as I said to the Senator from 
Hawaii, I will, if I'm confirmed, will obviously look at all 
these programs. I'll have to.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Inhofe.
    Senator Manchin.
    Senator Manchin. Thank you.
    Sir, I feel like I want to apologize for some of the tone 
and demeanor today.
    With that being said, if I could ask you this, since we're 
so again talking about things you have done, things you have 
said over the years. How did you get to Vietnam? I want to go 
back there. Were you ordered to go to Vietnam? Were you sent 
there? Or how was your orders?
    Senator Hagel. Actually I got to Vietnam through kind of an 
interesting route. I volunteered for the draft, as my brother 
did a month after me. During that time in 1967 the draft was 
coming down with pretty heavy levies. You recall.
    Senator Manchin. I was there.
    Senator Hagel. I know your story. They wouldn't take you, 
not because you weren't smart enough, of course, but they 
wouldn't take you because of your knees. I know you tried to 
bribe your way in, but they still wouldn't let you. I admire 
you for that effort and I know your story.
    I went to basic training, advanced infantry training. My 
brother followed me everywhere a month after me. After advanced 
infantry training, I was selected to be one of nine first class 
then-Top Secret shoulder-fired heat-seeking missile called the 
Redeye gun. At the time it was classified, and it was built to 
bring down low-flying Soviet MiGs coming over Germany, eastern 
Germany, down the Fulda Gap.
    We went to White Sands Missile Range and spent 2 months 
training. It was all classified, couldn't get calls in or out. 
We were then quietly, all nine of us, ordered to go to Germany 
and be integrated into NATO units without any fanfare or 
anybody knowing about it.
    I got my orders to go to Germany. I went to Fort Dix, NJ, 
in November 1967. My eight fellow soldiers and I were getting 
packed up to get the bus to go out to the airport to take a 
flight to Germany, and I just decided if I was going to be in 
the military it didn't make much sense to go to Germany. I'd 
never been to Germany. My great-grandparents were from Germany. 
Probably a pretty good place, I thought, but I had to go where 
there was a war.
    So I took my orders down to the orderly, told him I was 
Private Hagel, I had orders to go to Germany, here are my 
orders, and I wanted to volunteer to go to Vietnam. The office 
was a bit quiet. They put me in a holding room. They brought 
priests, rabbis, ministers, psychiatrists. All came in to 
examine me, thinking that something was wrong, I was running 
away from something or I had killed somebody.
    After 2 days of testing me to see if it was okay, they held 
me, which--I scrubbed barracks for 5 days before they could cut 
new orders. So they gave me new orders to go to Vietnam, sent 
me home for 5 days, and then on to Travis Air Force Base in San 
Francisco, and I got to Vietnam December 1967, got back to the 
United States December----
    Senator Manchin. There is no reason any one of us should 
ever be concerned about your willing to do anything that you 
possibly can to defend this country and making sure that we 
defend against all foreign enemies, wherever they may be?
    Senator Hagel. I hope not, Senator. I mean, we can disagree 
on policies, but I think my life and my commitment to this 
country is pretty clear, and I'm proud of it.
    Senator Manchin. On that, sir, I would say that Israel, the 
spokespeople for Israel, support you. They've come to me and 
they tell me they support you. Have you gotten that?
    Senator Hagel. There are a lot of pro-Israeli groups that 
have formally come out and endorsed me, support me, which I'm 
grateful for.
    Senator Manchin. From what I've heard today, it sounds like 
Iran has wishful thinking.
    Senator Hagel. Evidently Iran supports me.
    Senator Manchin. The President has asked you to serve at 
this level, so he has confidence in you.
    Senator Hagel. The President did ask me to serve. I said in 
my opening statement I am grateful and honored by that trust 
and confidence, and I will do everything in my power never to 
do anything that would disabuse that confidence and trust for 
this country.
    Senator Manchin. One final question very quickly, if I may. 
As you see the role of Secretary of Defense--and I know we've 
talked about and you've been questioned on policy, and I know 
you're not going to be in a policy position. You're going to be 
basically following policy, not making policy. But if you could 
just wrap it up, what we should expect from your position as 
Secretary of Defense?
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Senator. If I am confirmed, as I 
noted in my opening comments, I would see this relationship, 
Senator, as a partnership. I'm going to need your help. I'm 
going to need your advice. I'm going to need your 
collaboration.
    Many people on this authorization committee have a great 
deal of experience in this business, many far more than I do, 
as is the case in Congress, both the Senate and the House. I 
will need that. I will call upon that.
    I won't be in a policymaking position, as you note. I also 
committed to all of you--and those of you who served with me 
know this--I'll always be honest with you. You'll never have to 
worry about that. I'll listen to you. I'm sure we won't always 
agree, but I'll say it straight, and I'll give you and the 
President my honest, most informed advice always.
    Senator Manchin. Thank you. I'll say one more thing. Where 
I come from there's an old saying: If you can't change your 
mind, you can't change anything.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Manchin.
    Senator Sessions.
    Senator Sessions. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Thank you, Senator Hagel. You're holding up well. But it's 
an important office and you're asked to lead our Defense 
Department. I know you know the seriousness of that and it's 
exceedingly important.
    You have to know, and particularly in recent years, there 
has been tension in Congress between the executive branch and 
Congress over a number of issues. One of them is national 
missile defense, and that's a subcommittee I'm a member of and 
we've wrestled with that over the years, and had pretty 
consistently a bipartisan congressional vote on those issues. 
We voted again this year a unanimous Armed Services Defense 
Authorization Bill, unanimous out of committee, under Chairman 
Levin's leadership and Senator McCain.
    But I'm looking today, I believe in the National Journal, 
the Obama administration is moving to begin new U.S.-Russian 
talks on further drawdowns of the Nation's nuclear arsenal. 
That's also been an issue of concern, but I believe we've been 
staying fairly bipartisan and unified on that.
    But your report is what causes a great deal of concern, 
this study of the Global Zero group. But I just note that Vice 
President Biden is set to meet with Russian Foreign Minister 
Sergei Lavrov this weekend during the Munich security 
conference. National Security Advisor Tom Donilon will then 
head to Moscow in February. President Obama and then-President 
Medvedev signed the bilateral New START Treaty in 2010 calling 
for deployment of strategic nuclear arsenals involving 700 
delivery systems.
    Now, as I read the Global Zero report that you co-authored 
just last year, less than a year ago, you call for the 
elimination of all ICBMs, all tactical nuclear weapons, most of 
the bombers, I think 76 B-52s eliminated, leaving only 18 
bombers and 10 submarines. So instead of 700 delivery systems 
that was part of the New START, it looks like you're down to 
about 28 delivery systems. So this introduced dramatic concern.
    There are worries on Capitol Hill, the National Journal 
reports, that the administration could revise its missile 
shield strategy or go ahead with cutbacks to the U.S. stockpile 
as a means of drawing Russia into new negotiations. Foreign 
Policy Magazine reported ahead of your unannounced discussions 
with Lavrov, House committee chairman, subcommittee chairman, 
Mike Rogers asked that they have assurance as to what's going 
on there, essentially.
    I would note that the last year's defense authorization 
bill calls for briefings on these discussions to Congress, to 
the Armed Services Committee and the Foreign Relations 
Committee. It says ``Not later than 60 days after the date of 
the enactment of this act and not less than twice each year 
thereafter, the President or the President's designee shall 
brief the Committee on Foreign Relations and the Committee on 
Armed Services of the Senate on the dialogue between the United 
States and the Russian Federation on issues related to limits 
or controls on nuclear arms, missile defense systems, and long-
range conventional strike systems.'' The deadline I believe for 
that briefing would be March 2 this year.
    So a first question to you: If you're confirmed in this 
position, will you honor that request as part of the NDAA?
    Senator Hagel. The request for the briefing?
    Senator Sessions. Briefings, yes, the requirements for the 
briefings. Will you keep Congress advised on any discussions 
dealing with national missile defense and dialogue with Russia 
on national missile defense and nuclear arms and long-range 
conventional strike systems?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, I commit to do that.
    Senator Sessions. Also, there's a Sense of Congress on 
certain agreements: ``It is the Sense of Congress that any 
agreement between the United States and the Russian Federation 
related to nuclear arms or missile defense systems or long-
range conventional strike systems, obligating the United States 
to reduce or limit Armed Forces or armaments of the United 
States in any militarily significant manner may be made only 
pursuant to the treat-making power of the President as set 
forth in Article II, Section 2, Clause 2, of the Constitution 
of the United States.''
    That is a Sense of our Congress that any significant 
alteration of those deeply important relation between our two 
nations, the two most powerful nuclear nations in the world, 
would be done by treaty. Will you support that concept and 
before making significant changes present those changes to 
Congress pursuant to a treaty, and not as a either secret or 
open bilateral agreement?
    Senator Hagel. Your question is will I commit to a briefing 
on all this?
    Senator Sessions. No. Whether or not that any significant 
changes that would occur in our relationship on those issues, 
significant--``in any militarily significant manner may be made 
only pursuant to the treaty-making power of the President''. We 
would ask that that be presented to this Congress because we 
have treaties already that impact so much of this and Congress 
believes that any changes should also be made by treaty.
    Senator Hagel. Without getting into specifics of it, let me 
just commit to obviously consultation with Congress, with the 
authorizing committee, yes.
    Senator Sessions. It seems like we've not been consulted on 
the Biden trip and the Donilon trip. We expect that to be done. 
What's been going on is disturbing to us. The President said to 
Mr. Medvedev that we'll have more flexibility after the 
election, and he was clearly responding to these issues, 
missile defense I think in particular and maybe nuclear issues 
also. He wasn't consulting with the American people, wasn't 
telling us or Congress what he planned to do, but he was 
apparently willing to discuss it with the Russian leaders.
    I guess I'm asking you, will you comply with the treaty-
making matters? If these agreements are significant militarily, 
I believe they should be done by treaty and not by personal 
agreements between our two leaders.
    Senator Hagel. I would commit to fulfilling any treaty 
obligations and any commitments to Congress and any 
consultations that Congress needs to be part of, absolutely.
    Senator Sessions. I'm not sure that answered the question, 
because Congress is concerned about these kind of negotiations 
that are going on. We do not have--the President also has made 
it clear he believes in zero nuclear weapons. That is his 
policy for America. I think it's utterly unrealistic. It's just 
amazing to me, and that could lead us into unwise 
decisionmaking.
    Congress has a responsibility to the American people to 
ensure the national defense. We need to know and have you share 
those negotiations with us, and changes that impact our 
security relationships between us and Russia should be done by 
treaty, as they've been done in the past.
    Senator Hagel. I've never discussed any of the specifics of 
this with the President. I know he knows and believes and is 
committed to treaties. That's the purview of the U.S. Senate, 
as the Senate passed the New START treaty. All that goes into 
that negotiation with, in this particular case, Russia 
certainly Congress has to be involved in that.
    Senator Sessions. That's very important, Senator Hagel, I 
just have to tell you, because there's unease here that may not 
be in the works. There's been some discussion for some time 
about private unilateral or bilateral negotiations in which 
Congress is not involved, that impacts the national security of 
our country. That's why this was passed, just passed. So we 
expect you to comply with that, and I take your testimony that 
you would comply with that.
    Senator Hagel. I will comply with all requirements and 
laws, absolutely.
    Senator Sessions. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Sessions.
    Senator King.
    Senator King. Senator Hagel, one of the first meetings I 
had after I began running for this office last summer was with 
a group of veterans, going all the way from World War II right 
up through Iraq and Afghanistan. I want to share with you one 
of the ideas that came out of that meeting because it's been 
touched upon today, and that is the issue of employability and 
employment of particularly recent veterans. The suggestion was 
made that the Army and the military has recruiters, people who 
help to bring people in, and perhaps it might make some sense 
for them to have the reciprocal of recruiters, outplacement 
people to deal with soldiers who are, men and women, who are 
about to leave, because there's an information gap, is what the 
veterans told me, between leaving the military Active Duty and 
then going into the Veterans Administration jurisdiction. 
There's a gap there.
    You don't really need to respond, but that's a suggestion I 
might make, where it would be tremendously helpful to provide 
that kind of information--what the programs are, what's 
available, what the scholarships are, how the GI Bill works, 
all those things, to people. I'm sure it's done to some extent 
now, but to really regularize that and increase it, to be 
comparable to the effort that's put into recruiting.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Senator. I will think about that. 
I had not thought exactly about that potential, but I would say 
that as we think through how do we accommodate and fulfill 
commitments and assist our veterans, I think we have to open up 
all vistas of new thinking and that is one that would deserve 
some exploration and if I'm confirmed I look forward to 
pursuing the idea with you.
    Senator King. Thank you.
    I'm also serving on the Intelligence Committee and one of 
the issues--and you talked about this in your statement and 
it's been touched upon some today--is the whole issue of 
counterterrorism. Counterterrorism involves the actions of a 
number of agencies and bodies of the U.S. Government. I would 
commend to you that I think it deserves some real thought as to 
where DOD ends, stops, and the CIA begins in terms of action 
and counterterrorism action.
    I think it would be worthwhile for you, if you are 
confirmed, to meet with Mr. Brennan, if he's confirmed, to talk 
about the coordination between the two agencies, so we don't 
end up with similar, if not identical, functions in different 
regions of the world with whole different command structures, 
rules of engagement, and all of those kinds of things.
    I think counterterrorism sort of spans, covers the gap or 
the relationship between traditional defense and the 
Intelligence Community.
    Senator Hagel. That is an area that is becoming more and 
more relevant, complicated, title 10 versus title 50 and all 
those dynamics. If confirmed, yes, if Mr. Brennan is confirmed, 
we'll be spending some time together.
    Senator King. A final thought, and I know you've touched 
upon this. I don't think we can adequately emphasize the 
importance of the cyber threat. That may well be the war of the 
future. My sense is that we're all talking about it, but I'm 
not sure we have the sense of urgency. I know Secretary Panetta 
has increased or proposed the increase of that capacity. But 
people can die and our society could be brought to a standstill 
without a rocket ever taking off or an airplane penetrating our 
air space, and I hope that will be a point of emphasis because, 
as I say, I think that may be the next war.
    Senator Hagel. I agree. I noted it in my opening statement. 
I agree with everything you've said. This is a huge issue that 
continues to loom large over our future and our security, and 
it will have, if confirmed, a lot of my attention.
    Senator King. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you.
    Senator King [presiding]. In the absence of the chairman, 
Senator Ayotte, I believe it's your opportunity.
    Senator Ayotte. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator King. Wow, that was fast.
    Senator Ayotte. You've been promoted very quickly.
    Senator King. Really, that's astounding. [Laughter.]
    Senator Ayotte. First of all, we've all expressed our deep 
respect for your service to our country, but also let me thank 
you for your endurance. We appreciate it.
    I wanted to ask you about a speech that you made in 2007. 
It was at the Center for Strategic and International Studies 
and it was a speech titled ``The United States and Iran at 
Dangerous Crossroads''. In that speech you, in referring to 
Iran, you said that ``the strategy of containment remains 
relevant today''.
    I wanted to ask you about that statement that you made in 
2007 about ``the strategy of containment remains relevant'' 
with regard to Iran today. Now, that was in 2007, but why would 
you say that, first of all? Then, isn't that inconsistent with 
what you've been saying today with regard to containment?
    Senator Hagel. I don't have the speech in front of me and I 
think there was more to it than just that few words that you 
quoted. If I recall, the entire speech was about how do we deal 
with Iran. If I recall, what I was inventorying in specific 
reference to containment was within that inventory what are the 
options. I don't think that speech says that I support it.
    Senator Ayotte. No, but you said that it was relevant to 
the discussion with Iran, and I guess I would ask you to say 
why do you think that that was a strategy that we should have 
considered? It was obviously one of the things you mentioned.
    Senator Hagel. I didn't say it was a strategy, I don't 
think. As I said, in the context of how do we deal with----
    Senator Ayotte. I don't want to be unfair, but I think, 
just to be clear, the quote that you said was ``The strategy of 
containment remains relevant.'' So why is it relevant with 
regard to Iran?
    Senator Hagel. The bigger point is what I was saying, I 
think--I haven't looked at that speech since I gave it, 
probably, but I do recall some of it. The point was, what is 
the range of options that we would have to look at, the world 
would look at. Again, I didn't advocate it, I didn't recommend 
it, I didn't support it.
    Senator Ayotte. Was it that containment was one of the 
options?
    Senator Hagel. Yes. I mean, of course. When you look at the 
whole range of what your options are, that certainly would be 
one of them.
    Senator Ayotte. Do you think containment's one of the 
options now?
    Senator Hagel. No, I don't know. But it doesn't make any 
difference what I think. It's when you look at range, it's like 
the Global Zero report. That was not a recommendation report. 
That was a range of goals, aspirations, possibilities. That 
report never said we recommend the following. If I recall that 
speech, I think that was the same kind of what's the range of 
options.
    Senator Ayotte. Senator, I want to be clear: It does matter 
what you think, and obviously your understanding and thought 
process on these issues is very important to us. So as a 
follow-up, I know that Senator Vitter had asked you about a 
portion of the book that you wrote, ``America, Our Next 
Chapter,'' and it was in that book you had said that ``The 
genie of nuclear armaments is already out of the bottle no 
matter what Iran does.'' Obviously, North Korea, other powers. 
``In this imperfect world, sovereign nation states possession 
nuclear weapons capability, as opposed to stateless terrorist 
groups, will often respond with some degree of responsible, or 
at least sane, behavior.''
    Do you believe that Iran responds or will respond with some 
degree of responsible or sane behavior?
    Senator Hagel. First of all, it's not what I suggested in 
that quote.
    Senator Ayotte. Well, it's in the context of Iran, but I'm 
asking you just straightforwardly: Do you think that the 
Iranian regime responds--you talked about the difference 
between nation states versus, for example, stateless terrorist 
organizations. Do you believe, in the context of Iran, do you 
believe that the Iranian regime responds with some degree of 
responsible, or at least sane, behavior, or will respond like 
that?
    Senator Hagel. So far they have not, and I have said and 
I've said in that same book that you're quoting from, that Iran 
is a state sponsor of terrorism. I've said that many times. So 
no is the answer to your question.
    Senator Ayotte. If they haven't been responding with a 
level of, with a degree of responsible or sane behavior and, as 
you say in your book, that it's a state sponsor of terrorism, 
I'm also struggling with the question of why you would have 
thought that it was appropriate for us to have direct, 
unconditional talks with Iran, because here we have a regime 
that doesn't respond in a responsible or sane behavior, is a 
state sponsor of terrorism, and what we thought we could--why 
that would be an appropriate manner for us to address them?
    Senator Hagel. Well, first, I said ``engagement''. I think 
we should talk. We actually are indirectly in the P5 Plus 1. We 
have been. I think that's responsible. I think it's always 
responsible to try to talk first.
    North Korea, I don't consider North Korea a responsible, 
sane administration, but we are talking to North Korea. We've 
been talking bilaterally to North Korea. We're talking with the 
Party of 6 to North Korea. I think that's wise. I think it's 
always wise to try to talk to people before you get into war.
    Senator Ayotte. But I think that you were beyond the P5. 
You refer to direct discussions with our two countries, and 
also for establishing diplomatic ties with our country.
    Senator Hagel. Again, when I talked about the possibility 
of diplomatic ties or even I said, I think, in 2002 encouraging 
Iran to join the World Trade Organization, I've always thought 
that that's smarter more wiser, if you can push, help push, 
institutions like China into world bodies, because when they go 
into world bodies they have to comply with some semblance of 
international behavior. It doesn't mean they always will. They 
won't. They cheat. But I think we're smarter to do that.
    Senator, I've never thought engagement is weakness. I never 
thought it was surrender. I never thought it was appeasement. I 
think it's clearly in our interest. If that doesn't work, then 
I think the President's position and his strategy has been 
exactly right: Get the United Nations behind you, get the 
international sanctions behind you, keep military options on 
the table. If the military option is the only option, it's the 
only option.
    Senator Ayotte. Just to be clear, I don't think that all 
engagement is weakness, either. But I think there's a huge 
distinction when we're dealing with a regime that is the 
largest state sponsor of terrorism, and given the fact that 
they have a long history, including in Iraq, with assisting the 
militias to murder our troops, including what they've done with 
Hezbollah and Hamas, what they're doing now in Syria. I think 
there's always a distinction in how we deal with different 
players around the world, is my point.
    I know that my time has expired and I will submit for the 
record questions that I think are very important about the 
Virginia-class submarine. I share the important work done at 
the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard with my colleagues Senator Jeanne 
Shaheen and also I know Senator King is very focused on that, 
and maintaining our submarine fleet. I know that Senator 
Blumenthal asked you about that as well.
    I do have concerns that part of the Global Zero report does 
recommend that the Ohio-class submarine would actually be 
diminished down to 10. I'll follow up with those questions and 
the record. I have to go now. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. I'd be glad to respond. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin [presiding]. Thank you, Senator Ayotte.
    Senator Donnelly?
    Senator Donnelly. No.
    Chairman Levin. Okay. Senator Fischer.
    Senator Fischer. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Thank you, Senator Hagel. It's been a long day and I do 
appreciate your answers to these important questions.
    When we spoke last week, we talked somewhat about the 
sequester, also budget concerns, the modernization of our 
nuclear forces. Especially being from Nebraska, you understand 
the importance of STRATCOM and its mission as it deals with 
deterrence that we use in this country and that we've used for 
many, many years and I believe has been very, very successful 
and it's a good point for us.
    Today you also in your opening discussed the need to 
modernize our defensive forces. You spoke to Senator Blunt, 
also Senator Blumenthal, about the need to modernize our Navy.
    I guess I would like to hear your thought process about how 
we're going to do this. Where's the money coming from? How are 
you going to advise the President in making these decisions? 
Because we're looking at sequester, we're looking at budget 
constraints. How is this all going to tie together, and what 
would be your advice to the President on how the Pentagon is 
going to address all of those budget constraints?
    Senator Hagel. Let's start with where we are. The Pentagon 
is adjusting, and I think responsibly, to our future based on 
the Budget Control Act of 2011. You know the details of that. 
The Chiefs have submitted plans. I think as we rebalance and 
refit and unwind the second war and all the other dynamics that 
are changing since the last decade, it gives us some new 
opportunities: audits, all the acquisition focus, 
accountability. We are being forced, DOD, to take a hard look 
at its priorities.
    But as I've said before, it begins with mission and then 
the resources to fulfill that mission, and then what are the 
priorities within that mission.
    To your specific question, how do you finance it all, well, 
if sequestration would take effect then all of this is going to 
be affected. That's exactly right. We've deferred some 
decisions. We've set back some of the schedules on some of our 
ships, planes, decisions on a number of things.
    It isn't just the dollars that affect this, but it's the 
planning, it's the flexibility. It's the ability to bring all 
this together and then project and plan.
    So in no way--I hope I did not give any indication that we 
were going to be able to continue to do everything for 
everybody everywhere. That's just not a reality.
    Senator Fischer. We can't.
    Senator Hagel. We can't.
    Senator Fischer. How do you decide, though? You've made 
commitments to members here today on philosophy, on working 
with this committee. Do we have a commitment to build up the 
Navy? Do we have a commitment to STRATCOM so that they can 
continue their mission of deterrence? Do we have those 
commitments?
    How do you decide what's going to be the priority? What 
will your advice be? Is STRATCOM important? Should that be a 
priority? Would it be a priority in your advice to the 
President?
    Senator Hagel. The Pentagon is working off the Defense 
Authorization Act of 2013, which this committee passed. That is 
the directive that frames the budgetary restraints, except if 
sequestration takes effect. That prioritizes, to your point, 
being what's important, what do you budget for, what do you 
finance. We have to manage that.
    If I am confirmed, then I'll be working closely with our 
Chiefs and all of our managers and decisionmakers on how we do 
this. On STRATCOM, I think STRATCOM is vitally important to the 
future of this country. It's been my position when I was in the 
Senate. It was my position long before I was in the Senate. Of 
the nine combatant commands--STRATCOM is one of them--that's a 
key command.
    We have to continue to fund our commands and find ways to 
do that. But that's going to require some tough choices and 
hard decisions.
    Senator Fischer. Right. Also, I believe we need to make 
sure we don't have hollow forces out there as well.
    My time's up. Once again, I thank you. I thank you for your 
service. I thank you for being here today. I thank you for your 
willingness to continue to serve the people of this country.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, thank you.
    Senator Fischer. Thank you.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you very much.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you very much, Senator Fischer.
    Senator Blunt.
    Senator Blunt. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Again, I join everybody else, Senator Hagel, in thanking 
you for staying today and the answers you've given.
    One of the things we were frustrated about was the 
difficulty of getting information on the groups you've spoken 
to in the last year, and of course the hundreds of groups 
you've spoken to in the course of your career would be too much 
to ask. I do have three comments from groups that I'm going to 
enter into the record, two comments you made before groups, one 
the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee conference in 
2002; another Arab-American audience in 2007; and then in 2006, 
the one I'll put in the record right now and just enter the 
others, the Council on American-Islamic Relations Forum. 
``University of Chicago Professor John Mearsheimer praised 
Hagel for not being pro-Israel. He said `Potential presidential 
candidates for 2008, like Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Joe 
Biden, and Newt Gingrich, were falling all over themselves to 
express their support for Israel. The only exception to that 
rule was Senator Chuck Hagel.' '' Unfortunately, I don't have 
anything to go with that of what you might have said.
    But some of the concerns of being--I used to say when I was 
the Whip in the House that you could count on the House and the 
Senate to be, among other things, always pro-Israel, and I 
think that's been the mainstream of our views. I've seen a 
number of times, in fairness to you, where you've said you're 
pro-Israel, but that doesn't mean you have to be reflexively 
for everything that Israel is for.
    These statements are what they are. They're the things that 
were reported from comments you made that are out of the 
context of the other comments. But I'm going to put those all 
in the record.
    [The information referred to follows:]
      
    [GRAPHICS NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]
      
    Senator Blunt. Also, earlier today I asked you about the 
comment about the bloated Pentagon. I want to get this 
straight. You said that that, those comments, were before the 
sequestration bill passed, and they were after. Sequestration 
passed on August 2. The Financial Times interview was on August 
29. What you said on August 29 in that Financial Times 
interview was you said ``I think''--August 29, 2011. The quote 
out of the article was:
    ``The Defense Department I think''--this was your quote. 
``The Defense Department I think in many ways has been bloated. 
Let's look at the reality here. The Defense Department's gotten 
everything it wanted the last 10 years and more. We've taken 
priorities, we've taken dollars, we've taken programs, we've 
taken policies out of the State Department, out of a number of 
other Departments, and put them over in Defense.''
    So that ``bloated'' comment was after sequestration. Of 
course, this is the Department you now, 18 months later, if 
this nomination is approved, would be running. Again, where do 
we find that, those bloated things in the Defense Department, 
and what are you prioritizing? Another way to ask what Ms. 
Fischer was asking maybe is, are we going to let money drive 
strategy here or strategy drive the money? As Secretary of 
Defense, which of those positions are you going to take and how 
are you going to advocate, here's the money we need for the 
strategy we must have until we get to the reality of here's the 
money you have, now do the best you can with it? I hope you're 
an advocate for strategic-driven spending in the Pentagon, 
rather than just the caretaker of the money that winds up 
there.
    Senator Hagel. Senator, thank you. There are a lot of 
pieces and I know we have time issues, but let me start this 
way. First, on the comments I made in the Financial Times 
interview, again as I addressed that today, that was an 
extensive interview about a lot of things. So I was 3 weeks 
off.
    Senator Blunt. Well, you were after the sequestration bill 
had passed, though. So you were talking----
    Senator Hagel. Not sequestration; the Budget Control Act.
    Senator Blunt. But that's what included--they were talking 
here about what would happen if you took these cuts.
    Senator Hagel. That's what I was talking about. But the 
Budget Control Act that was passed was implemented a few months 
later, which I agreed with, and obviously the majority of 
Congress did as well, to try to find $1 trillion overall in our 
Government in savings and $490 billion is coming out of DOD for 
the next 10 years.
    But to your bigger point, you start there with the reality 
of what Congress has passed, what Congress has decided to 
appropriate for each Federal agency. In this current fiscal 
year that we're living in, it's a $525 billion operating budget 
and $88 billion for overseas contingencies. DOD works within 
the framework of those numbers.
    I've said a number of times here that I agree with you that 
budget alone should not drive our national security, of course 
not. What is the mission, as I've said? What are the 
priorities, which you just brought up about different projects 
that Senator Fischer and others have asked me about? How are 
going to fund everything? Should you fund everything?
    Do times change? Are there different threats? Ten years 
ago, we put a lot of money in the Defense Department budget; 
there was no such thing as a cyber warfare threat. Do we need 
to do more there?
    Do we need to change our force presence in Asia? We've 
decided we're going to do that. That changes things. We're 
moving marines around in the Pacific. That wasn't the case 10 
years ago.
    So things change. You manage and you direct your efforts 
and you lead based on the security interests of your country 
first. If I am confirmed, Senator, I will be a strong, have to 
be a strong advocate for the Defense Department. That will be 
part of my job. But that doesn't mean that I don't have some 
responsibilities for efficient use of the taxpayers' dollars 
and effective use of the taxpayers' dollars.
    Senator Blunt. Just the opposite, you do have that 
responsibility.
    Senator Hagel. I do, that's right.
    Senator Blunt. But I think the point is we want to be sure 
that you're advocating for the money you think you need to 
strategically accomplish what we can. Then obviously at the end 
of the day you have to deal with the will of the process to 
provide the money you have. But we ought to let the money as 
much as possible be defined by the strategy rather than the 
other way around, Senator.
    Senator Hagel. I agree with that.
    Senator Blunt. I'm once again out of time.
    Senator Hagel. I agree with that, Senator. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Blunt.
    Senator Reed.
    Senator Reed. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, we have listened all afternoon to a series 
of questions about what you said in 2002, in 2006, in 2007. I 
expect, though, if you're confirmed as the Secretary of Defense 
the President of the United States will not turn to you and ask 
you about your floor speeches, as elegant as they were. He will 
ask you if you're prepared to advise him on matters of 
literally life and death, that you have prepared DOD to address 
every contingency in a thoughtful way, knowing the costs and 
the benefits; that he assumes, as I do and as you've stated 
repeatedly, your staunch commitment to our allies, in 
particular in the context today of the State of Israel; and 
that you are fundamentally committed to the welfare of our 
troops and families because you have seen as a soldier that 
ultimately they are the difference in our military.
    Looking not backwards to a series of individual quotes and 
footnotes, but looking ahead, if you are there and the 
President turns to you, can you give us--and I think you can; 
I'm convinced of that--the confidence that you will be prepared 
to give him the advice he needs to make life and death 
decisions which he as Commander in Chief must make?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, when the President asked me to 
consider this job I didn't want another job. I was not looking 
for another job. Lilibet and I had a pretty good life since I 
left the Senate, nothing personal. But the friendships that 
we've maintained here and valued here and the experiences we 
had here we will treasure for always. Highest privilege of my 
life, serving in this body.
    I say that because I wasn't looking for another job. The 
President asked me to come see him and we had a long 
conversation one night, just the two of us, over an hour. We 
talked about the job, the world, security, the future. Within 
the context of that conversation, we got down into what about 
this job.
    I didn't try to sell him on the job, that I could do it. In 
fact, when he asked me about why am I qualified or why would I 
be uniquely qualified, I said I'm not. There are a lot of very 
qualified Americans who could do this job. I don't think a lot 
of them in the sense that they're out there everywhere. I think 
there are some qualifications for this job. But I'm not the 
only one.
    I said: ``Mr. President, I'm not going to sit here and try 
to convince you that I'm the right person. You know me, you 
know my record, you know what I believe.'' I've had the 
opportunity to work with him pretty closely over the last 4 
years as I served as co-chairman with you and Senator Levin's 
former colleague, Senator Dave Boren from Oklahoma, on the 
President's Intelligence Advisory Board. That's allowed me to 
stay pretty current with intelligence and make a contribution 
maybe a little bit there. In the last 4 years I've served on 
Secretary Gates', Secretary Panetta's Policy Advisory Boards.
    I do have some understanding, as I told him, of this. But 
why I think when Lilibet and I talked about it I agreed to go 
forward with this is because of the tremendous opportunities 
and the important time that we are living in and the 
opportunities we now have to help make a better world. I think 
the next few years are going to be as defining and as important 
in this country truly as any few years post-World War II.
    I told the President he was here at a very defining time, 
and if I can help him do that, if I can help this country, I 
want to do it. The experiences I'll bring to the job, Senator, 
I think I have a pretty varied background on a lot of things. I 
think always in the end, like any job, judgment is the ultimate 
determinant of everything. I think experience is a factor, 
varied experience, responsible experience. But that all adds up 
to judgment. I hope, if I'm confirmed, I can do those things to 
give the President and this country wise, informed, honest 
advice, and I will do everything within my power to do that.
    Senator Reed. Thank you very much.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Reed.
    Senator Cruz.
    Senator Cruz. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Senator Hagel, thank you for remaining through what has 
been a very long hearing.
    I'd like to ask some additional questions to further 
explore your positions and your record, and begin with asking: 
Are you familiar with an individual named Chas Freeman?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, yes.
    Senator Cruz. He was, if I understand correctly, a vice 
chairman at the Atlantic Council; is that correct?
    Senator Hagel. When I became Chairman of the Atlantic 
Council after I left the Senate to replace General Jim Jones, 
he was one of many board members and I think was a vice 
chairman. But I never really worked with him in the Atlantic 
Council, but I know him, yes.
    Senator Cruz. You and he were part of a group that traveled 
last year to China together; is that correct as well?
    Senator Hagel. No, that's not correct.
    Senator Cruz. Okay. There have been press reports to that 
effect.
    Senator Hagel. Those press reports are incorrect. I have 
never been on any trip with Chas Freeman.
    Senator Cruz. There have also been press reports that has 
described Mr. Freeman as helping coordinate efforts to defend 
your nomination. Is that an accurate characterization?
    Senator Hagel. I haven't spoken with Chas Freeman in years. 
I don't know of any activity that he's involved in to endorse 
me. There are a lot of people I appreciate are endorsing me and 
supporting me, but I haven't talked to Chas Freeman in years.
    Senator Cruz. Is he someone whose judgment you respect?
    Senator Hagel. I think Chas Freeman has been an important 
public servant for this country. There are a lot of different 
opinions that people have on different issues. I don't agree 
with everybody and it's pretty clear everybody doesn't agree 
with me. So that's okay.
    Senator Cruz. Do you consider his views well within the 
mainstream?
    Senator Hagel. What views are you speaking about, Senator?
    Senator Cruz. His views on the Middle East and on the 
Nation of Israel?
    Senator Hagel. I'm not actually that familiar with all of 
his views. I can't speak for Chas Freeman.
    Senator Cruz. All right. Let's move on to your record then. 
You stated in your prepared remarks: ``My overall world view 
has never changed.'' I have to admit I find that difficult to 
reconcile with statements and positions you've taken for over a 
decade and what seems to me a fairly significant shift since 
you've been nominated for Secretary of Defense.
    What I'd like to do is go through some past statements, 
past positions of yours and just clarify if you agree with them 
or not, beginning with number one. In 2001, you voted against 
legislation sanctioning Iran. Now, am I correct you no longer 
agree with that position; you think sanctions against Iran are 
a good policy today?
    [The information referred to follows:]

    In 2001, Senator Hagel voted against legislation sanctioning Iran 
for its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and support for 
international terrorism.

    Senator Hagel. I have said on the record multilateral 
international sanctions----
    Senator Cruz. Do you agree with sanctions against Iran?
    Senator Hagel. I'm sorry?
    Senator Cruz. Do you think sanctions against Iran are a 
good idea today?
    Senator Hagel. Yes, yes. Yes, I always have.
    Senator Cruz. So it's fair--I'm trying to characterize 
your--I'm trying to understand your views and characterize them 
fairly. It's fair to say you no longer agree with the position 
in 2001 that we should not be sanctioning Iran?
    Senator Hagel. That was a unilateral sanction and the Bush 
administration--
    Senator Cruz. Today do you think unilateral sanctions are a 
bad idea?
    Senator Hagel. It's a different time now because we now 
have international sanctions on. I've supported the President's 
position----
    Senator Cruz. Senator Hagel, please answer the question I 
asked. Today do you think unilateral sanctions would be a bad 
idea?
    Senator Hagel. Not today, 12 years later.
    Senator Cruz. So that is not a view you'd agree with today?
    Senator Hagel. Because times have changed. We now have 
international sanctions on them.
    Senator Cruz. The second slide: In 2007, you voted against 
legislation designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a 
terrorist group.
    Senator Hagel. That's correct.
    [The information referred to follows:]

    In 2007, Senator Hagel voted against legislation designating the 
Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist group.

    Senator Cruz. You no longer agree with that policy. Today 
your position is the Iranian Revolutionary Guard is a terrorist 
group; is that correct?
    Senator Hagel. The Revolutionary Guard is part of the 
Iranian Government. The reason I voted against----
    Senator Cruz. Sir, I'm not asking the reason. I'm asking 
for your views today. Do you believe the Iranian Revolutionary 
Guard is a terrorist group, yes or no?
    Senator Hagel. It is part of a state sponsor of terrorism, 
so it's part of Iran, which I've said is a sponsor of state 
terrorism.
    Senator Cruz. Is that a yes?
    Senator Hagel. That vote wasn't that question. That vote 
gave----
    Senator Cruz. I'm asking your views today. Do you believe 
the Iranian Revolutionary National Guard is a terrorist group?
    Senator Hagel. It is part of a terrorist--it is part of a 
government that supports terrorism.
    Senator Cruz. Is that a yes or a no?
    Senator Hagel. It's the answer I just gave you.
    Senator Cruz. All right, we'll move on to the next one. In 
2008, you also voted against comprehensive Iran sanctions. 
We've already discussed that today you agree with sanctions, so 
that is another position----
    [The information referred to follows:]

    In 2008, Senator Hagel voted against the Comprehensive Iran 
Sanctions, Accountability and Divestment Act in the Senate Banking 
Committee.

    Senator Hagel. That again was a unilateral sanction that 
the Bush administration was opposed to, and the Secretary of 
State of this country, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, 
wrote that.
    Senator Cruz. Sir, my time is limited. I understand that 
you want to give reasons for the past positions. We've 
discussed the reasons. I'm simply trying to clarify your 
positions today.
    If you look at number four, in 2010 you stated you're not 
sure it's necessary to keep all options on the table with 
regard to Iran's nuclear program. Do you agree with that 
position today or is that no longer your position?
    [The information referred to follows:]

    In 2010, Senator Hagel told the Atlantic Council he was ``not so 
sure it is necessary to continue to say all options are on the table'' 
regarding Iran's nuclear program.

    Senator Hagel. I don't recall that. I have always said that 
all options remain on the table. I don't recall that speech.
    Senator Cruz. So this is not your position today? I'm just 
trying to understand.
    Senator Hagel. No, it's not. I have said that all options 
must remain on the table, including--in fact, in an op-ed I 
wrote with two former CENTCOM commanders last year----
    Senator Cruz. The final one I'm going to ask you: In a 1998 
Senate hearing, you stated that the United States has ``tilted 
too far towards Israel in the Middle East peace process''. Do 
you continue to agree with this position or is that no longer 
your position today?
    [The information referred to follows:]

    In a 1998 Senate hearing, Senator Hagel said that the United States 
has ``tilted too far toward Israel in the Middle East peace process.''

    Senator Hagel. I don't remember that, the context of the 
hearing or the speech or all the things I said in it. No, I 
don't think the United States has tilted too far to Israel. I 
support the President's position on Israel. I've said in my 
book and other speeches that I strongly support Israel.
    Senator Cruz. So you do not agree with this policy? I will 
point out that I have a list of 10 other statements in the past 
which I'm pretty confident if I asked you you would say you do 
not agree with, and they're all statements and quotes from you.
    In my judgment, your record as a U.S. Senator--and you and 
I don't know each other. We do not have a personal 
relationship. But I think your record and your past statements 
as a U.S. Senator demonstrate greater antagonism for the Nation 
of Israel than any member of this body, and also demonstrate a 
greater willingness to stand against sanctions, stand against 
military action, stand against any strong position against 
Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah, terrorists.
    That ultimately is why the Washington Post described your 
foreign policy views as ``near the fringe of the Senate''. That 
raises, I think, very serious questions about your suitability 
to serve as the Secretary of Defense. In my view, having a 
Secretary of Defense who is not viewed as supporting credible, 
strong military action makes it more likely the United States 
will be drawn into military conflict, and I think that would be 
a very unfortunate outcome.
    Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. Thank you, Senator Cruz.
    That ends the second round. If you want an opportunity to 
comment on that. If not, I will ask you some other questions.
    By the way, Senator Ayotte, in reaction to one of the 
things you said about it doesn't matter what I believe, I think 
what you were--first of all, I think it does matter. We all 
would agree it very much matters what you believe. But I think 
what you were pointing out is that ultimately what matters is 
what the President believes. I think that's what you were 
aiming at.
    Senator Hagel. That's exactly what I was aiming at, and 
that's what I meant to say, that's right. Thank you.
    Chairman Levin. I'm now going to ask you the standard 
questions that I've delayed, and these are just the questions 
we ask of every nominee.
    Have you adhered to applicable laws and regulations 
governing conflicts of interest?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Chairman Levin. Have you assumed any duties or undertaken 
any actions which would appear to presume the outcome of the 
confirmation process?
    Senator Hagel. I'm sorry? I didn't hear.
    Chairman Levin. Have you assumed any duties or undertaken 
any actions which would appear to presume the outcome of the 
confirmation process?
    Senator Hagel. No.
    Chairman Levin. Will you ensure that your staff complies 
with deadlines established for requested communications, 
including questions for the record in hearings?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Chairman Levin. If you are confirmed, will you cooperate in 
providing witnesses and briefers in response to congressional 
requests?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Chairman Levin. Will those witnesses be protected from 
reprisal for their testimony or their briefings?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Chairman Levin. Do you agree, if confirmed, to appear and 
testify upon request before this committee?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Chairman Levin. Do you agree that you will provide 
documents, including copies of electronic forms of 
communication, in a timely manner when requested by a duly 
constituted committee or to consult with the committee 
regarding the basis for any good faith delay or denial in 
providing such documents?
    Senator Hagel. Yes.
    Chairman Levin. Now, we've completed our second round and 
that means that if there's other questions remaining, we can 
take a few minutes for them. Is there anybody that wants to? 
Yes, Senator King.
    Senator King. One very brief question. In watching 
television over the last week or so, I've seen an ad 
questioning your nomination, a television ad. I just wondered 
if you or any of the people that have worked on preparing you 
for this has any idea who's sponsoring that ad, because it's 
not apparent from the ad itself? Have you gotten to the bottom 
of that?
    Senator Hagel. Senator, first, I have not seen any of those 
ads. I know they're there. I long ago figured out the better 
way to live life is not get drug down in the underbrush of 
these kinds of things. So I don't pay attention to it. My focus 
is on what's important about this assignment, this job, if I am 
confirmed, and in particular this committee and this body, and 
preparing myself hopefully for what matters with the 
possibility that the U.S. Senate confirms me for this job.
    I have not asked anybody that question. I don't know, have 
never seen the ads.
    Senator King. Thank you very much, and thank you for your 
testimony today. You've been forthright and strong, and again I 
appreciate your commitment to this country.
    Senator Hagel. Thank you, Senator.
    Chairman Levin. Another question?
    Senator Cruz. Very briefly, I wanted to thank you for your 
commitment to this committee, number one, to provide a complete 
accounting and copies of the speeches you've given; and number 
two, to respond to the letter that you received 2 days ago 
requesting specific financial information. I appreciate your 
commitment to do that.
    I also would ask you--in our discussion about Chas Freeman 
you said you were not particularly close with him, but that 
your understanding was his views were within the mainstream, if 
that's a fair characterization.
    Senator Hagel. No, I didn't say in the mainstream. I said I 
don't know.
    Senator Cruz. Okay. What I would ask you to do also as a 
follow-up is to review in particular a speech that Mr. Freeman 
gave on March 4, 2011, at the Palestine Center in Washington, 
DC, and give me your judgment in terms of whether you agree 
with the views on the Middle East and the views of the Nation 
of Israel that are expressed in that speech. In particular, I 
would be interested in your views on the fifth paragraph of 
that speech.
    In my view, the views expressed in that speech are not 
accurate and not within the mainstream, and I would be 
interested if you concur in that assessment or if you have a 
different assessment.
    Chairman Levin. That's a question you're asking for the 
record?
    Senator Cruz. For the record, yes.
    [The information referred to follows:]
      
    [GRAPHICS NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]
    
      
    Chairman Levin. Okay. Any other questions for the record 
need to be submitted, as I said before, by tomorrow at 5 p.m.
    I assume, Senator Cruz, that when you said that he's agreed 
to provide all of the speeches, it would be all the speeches 
that he has access to; is that fair?
    Senator Cruz. That he has or that he can get copies of. I 
would certainly hope and expect that he would engage in 
reasonable efforts to get copies of speeches if he doesn't have 
them in his immediate files.
    Chairman Levin. We'll say that if you have easy access or 
reasonable access to speeches you've given, even though you 
don't have them, that we would expect that you could provide 
this as well, as well as the other information you indicated 
you're perfectly happy to submit, you just haven't had the time 
to get it ready.
    Senator Hagel. Mr. Chairman, I will commit to that and 
every request, as we have. As I said, some of this I didn't see 
until yesterday. But everything that is out there that we can 
find, we'll make every effort to get it and provide it.
    Chairman Levin. We very much appreciate that, and your 
openness in your responses today.
    Again, the record will be open until tomorrow, as I said, 
at 5 p.m. But your answers we would hope and expect would be in 
by Monday at 5 p.m., because we would very much like to move 
this nomination forward to a resolution, first on this 
committee, and that timetable would help us move in an 
expeditious way.
    We thank you. We thank your family and your friends.
    Unless there are other questions, we will now stand 
adjourned. Thank you.
    [Whereupon, at 5:50 p.m., the committee adjourned.]

    [Prepared questions submitted to the Hon. Chuck Hagel by 
Chairman Levin prior to the hearing with answers supplied 
follow:]
                        Questions and Responses
                            defense reforms
    Question. The Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense 
Reorganization Act of 1986 and the Special Operations reforms have 
strengthened the warfighting readiness of our Armed Forces. They have 
enhanced civilian control and clearly delineated the operational chain 
of command and the responsibilities and authorities of the combatant 
commanders, and the role of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. 
They have also clarified the responsibility of the Military Departments 
to recruit, organize, train, equip, and maintain forces for assignment 
to the combatant commanders.
    Do you see the need for modifications of any Goldwater-Nichols Act 
provisions?
    If so, what areas do you believe might be appropriate to address in 
these modifications?
    Answer. I believe that the success of our Armed Forces since the 
enactment of the Goldwater-Nichols Act amply demonstrates that the act 
has enhanced the ability of our Armed Forces to defend our Nation and 
to operate successfully as joint forces under our combatant commanders. 
If confirmed, I will evaluate the implementation of the act, and will 
make recommendations for modifications if necessary. At present, I am 
aware of no need to make changes to the act.
                   duties of the secretary of defense
    Question. Section 113 of title 10, U.S.C., provides that the 
Secretary of Defense is the principal assistant to the President in all 
matters relating to the Department of Defense (DOD). Subject to the 
direction of the President, the Secretary of Defense, under section 
113, has authority, direction, and control over DOD.
    Do you believe there are actions you need to take to enhance your 
ability to perform the duties of the Secretary of Defense?
    Answer. I believe title 10 provides the Secretary of Defense 
appropriate, sufficient, and clear authority to lead DOD and to serve 
as the principal assistant to the President on all matters relating to 
the Department. I do not foresee needing to take any actions to enhance 
the ability of the Secretary of Defense to execute assigned duties.
    Question. What changes to section 113, if any, would you recommend?
    Answer. At present, I believe that section 113 provides sufficient 
legal authority to the Secretary of Defense to allow him to perform his 
two primary functions. I do not foresee needing to recommend changes to 
section 113.
                             qualifications
    Question. What background and experience do you have that you 
believe qualifies you for this position?
    Answer. I volunteered for the draft and then volunteered to go to 
Vietnam after I received orders to go to Germany. I served a 12-month 
tour which included the Tet Offensive in 1968. I rose to the rank of 
infantry sergeant. For 10 of those months, I served alongside my 
younger brother Tom. I understand what it is like to be a soldier in 
war. I also understand what happens when there is poor morale and 
discipline among the troops and a lack of clear objectives, 
intelligence, and command and control from Washington. I believe that 
experience will help me as Secretary of Defense to ensure we maintain 
the best fighting force in the world, protect our men and women in 
uniform, and ensure that we are cautious and certain when contemplating 
the use of force.
    When I returned from Vietnam, I graduated from the University of 
Nebraska, using the G.I. Bill. Because of that benefit, I co-authored 
with fellow Vietnam veteran Senator Jim Webb, the new G.I. Bill which 
became law in 2008. I know the importance of providing our military 
personnel and their families with the benefits they need, not only 
while in the military, but once they return to civilian life, and I 
will not forget that if I am confirmed as Secretary of Defense.
    I was wounded twice during my tour in Vietnam. In 1981, I was 
appointed by President Reagan and confirmed by the Senate to be Deputy 
Administrator of the Veterans Administration. I later resigned because 
of inadequate support for Vietnam veterans suffering from Agent Orange 
and other Vietnam veterans programs that were being eliminated. I have 
worked with, and on behalf of veterans' organizations my entire life. I 
know when the system is working, and when it is failing. The past 
decade of war has produced tens of thousands of wounded warriors. Many 
are still on Active Duty. Others have or are transitioning to civilian 
life. All need the best care we they can give them. Because of my own 
experiences, I will honor that commitment to veterans and their 
families if I become Secretary of Defense.
    While I do not believe anyone can be fully prepared to manage an 
organization as large and complex as DOD, I believe that I have 
significant management experience that gives me a strong sense of what 
needs to be done. Most important is building and working with teams. 
This is always an essential foundational element of management and 
leadership. In the 1970s, I was the Chief of Staff to a U.S. 
Congressman and then later Manager of Government Affairs for Firestone 
Tire and Rubber Company. In the early 1980s, I co-founded Vanguard 
Cellular Systems, Inc., a publicly traded company, which became one of 
the largest independent cellular systems in the country. I also served 
as President and Chief Executive Officer of the World USO; the Chief 
Operating Officer of the 1990 Economic Summit of Industrialized Nations 
(G-7 Summit) in Houston, TX; Deputy Commissioner General of the United 
States for the 1982 World's Fair; President of the Private Sector 
Council and president of an investment bank. I have also served on 
boards of some of the world's largest companies.
    Finally as a U.S. Senator from Nebraska for 12 years, I have a 
legislative record of continuing and unwavering support for our 
military and our national security. I have voted to authorize the use 
of military force and I have questioned the military and foreign policy 
decisions of our leaders. I believe this experience has prepared me to 
make the tough decisionsand to know that I am accountable for those 
decisions.
                               priorities
    Question. If confirmed, you will confront a range of critical 
issues relating to threats to national security and ensuring that the 
Armed Forces are prepared to deal with these threats.
    In your view, what are the major challenges confronting the next 
Secretary of Defense?
    Answer. The next Secretary of Defense will be confronted with a 
myriad of challenges stemming from an ever more complex global 
environment. Some of the challenges we know today, but many will 
continue to unfold as we conclude over 10 years at war and look to the 
future of our military posture. In an ever changing world with both 
state and non-state actors developing nontraditional tools of war, the 
United States will be challenged by technological advancements that 
bring the battlefield to both space and cyberspace. Terrorist 
organizations continue to proliferate throughout the world and have a 
significant presence in places such as Yemen, Somalia and North Africa, 
areas that pose great risk for regional stability. With the ever 
present threat of Iran, the next Secretary of Defense must be vigilant 
in pursuing the goal of preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear 
weapon, and must maintain our unshakeable commitment to Israel's 
security. As the United States begins to rebalance to the Asia-Pacific 
region, the Department will be faced by new challenges in this vital 
part of the world. Piracy, maritime security, disaster relief efforts, 
and, of course, continued vigilance to terrorism and proliferation of 
nuclear weapons name just a few known challenges. All of these things 
come while the United States is fighting its own battles at home to 
take care of its service men and women returning from over ten decades 
of war with rising medical costs and advanced medical conditions. 
Keeping the faith with our military men and women must remain a high 
priority to ensure the military itself stays as strong and faithful as 
its parts. While these are some of the few challenges we know, there 
are far too many that are not yet apparent. We must be prepared for any 
contingency we may face in the coming years all while doing so in the 
confines of this austere budget environment.
    Question. Assuming you are confirmed, what plans do you have for 
addressing these challenges?
    Answer. If confirmed, I plan to work with the President, Congress, 
and with senior civilian and military leaders of DOD to come up with 
comprehensive plans to address each issue. No single issue will have a 
single simple answer. This will be an iterative process that will 
employ the full force of Government. It will necessitate strong 
relationships I plan to maintain and strengthen with our allies and 
partners throughout the globe. We will define our post-2014 presence in 
Afghanistan and create a new relationship and partnership with 
Afghanistan. To counter terrorism, we will look into how we use our 
special operations forces and the development of new technologies and 
surveillance techniques. As long as nuclear weapons exist, we must 
maintain a safe, secure, and effective nuclear arsenal to deter any 
adversary. I am committed to considering all options to counter Iran 
and its aggression, and to maintain U.S. support for missile defense 
systems in Israel. With the rebalance to the Asia Pacific, our training 
and specializations will change as the battlefield and necessary skills 
of our servicemembers change. As our troops transition out of over 10 
years of war, I will look at the services available for our men and 
women, both those that continue to serve and those that transition to 
civilian life. If confirmed, I plan to continue the work of Secretary 
Panetta to address issues of the force, such as the unthinkable problem 
of sexual assault within our ranks. I will continue the implementation 
of the repeal of ``Don't Ask, Don't Tell'' and the opening of positions 
to women. I will give great attention to all issues that confront our 
country and our military to ensure the reputation and strength of the 
United States.
    Question. If confirmed, what broad priorities would you establish 
in terms of issues which must be addressed by the Secretary of Defense?
    Answer. If confirmed, it would be a priority to ensure the stable 
transition out of Afghanistan in the next few years, to maintain U.S. 
military and technological superiority against enemies both known and 
unknown, and to keep the faith with our men and women in the military 
standing guard to protect this great and vibrant country.
                            chain of command
    Question. Section 162(b) of title 10, U.S.C., provides that the 
chain of command runs from the President to the Secretary of Defense 
and from the Secretary of Defense to the combatant commands. Section 
163(a) of title 10 further provides that the President may direct 
communications to combatant commanders be transmitted through the 
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and may assign duties to the 
Chairman to assist the President and the Secretary of Defense in 
performing their command function.
    Do you believe that these provisions facilitate a clear and 
effective chain of command?
    Answer. I believe that having a clear and effective chain of 
command is essential to successful military operations, and that these 
provisions of law lay the foundation for such a chain of command.
    Question. In your view, do these provisions enhance or degrade 
civilian control of the military?
    Answer. In my view, these provisions significantly enhance civilian 
control by codifying the placement of the President, as Commander in 
Chief, and his principal assistant for military matters, the Secretary 
of Defense, where they can best exercise civilian control of the 
military: in the top two positions of the military chain of command.
    Question. Are there circumstances in which you believe it is 
appropriate for U.S. military forces to be under the operational 
command or control of an authority outside the chain of command 
established under title 10, U.S.C.?
    Answer. I believe that all military forces normally should operate 
under the chain of command established under section 162 of title 10, 
U.S.C. However, in certain sensitive operations a temporary exception 
to that chain of command may be appropriate. I understand that only the 
President may approve such an exception and the President retains 
overall command responsibility, as also recognized in section 162. Any 
military personnel supporting such sensitive operations remain 
accountable to the military chain of command, including the Uniform 
Code of Military Justice. If confirmed, I will provide the President 
with my best advice regarding any operation where an exception to the 
established chain of command may be appropriate.
       advice of the service chiefs and the combatant commanders
    Question. Section 151 of title 10, U.S.C., provides, in part, that 
the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the principal military 
adviser to the President, the National Security Council, and the 
Secretary of Defense and that if any member of the Joint Chiefs submits 
to the Chairman advice or an opinion, in disagreement with, or advice 
or an opinion in addition to, the advice presented by the Chairman, the 
Chairman shall present that advice or opinion at the same time he 
provides his own advice to the President, the National Security 
Council, and the Secretary of Defense. Section 163 of title 10, U.S.C., 
provides that the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff serves as the 
spokesman for the combatant commanders, especially on the operational 
requirements of their commands.
    What changes in law, if any, do you think may be necessary to 
ensure that the views of the individual Service Chiefs and of the 
combatant commanders are presented and considered?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will welcome and carefully consider the 
advice of the individual members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the 
combatant commanders. I believe that the current law provides ample 
authority for such a close, advisory process. If I find in the future 
that changes may enhance this process, I will work with the Department 
and Congress to implement those changes.
    Question. What is your view on the appropriate role of the Chief of 
the National Guard Bureau as a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff?
    Answer. The Chief of the National Guard Bureau brings an important 
perspective to the Joint Chiefs and to the Department on matters 
affecting the National Guard. In my view, the Chief of the National 
Guard Bureau should fulfill his duty as a member of the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff in a manner consistent with the laws governing the role of the 
Chief of the National Guard Bureau and the role of the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff.
                         use of military force
    Question. The question as to whether and when U.S. forces should 
participate in potentially dangerous situations is one of the most 
important and difficult decisions that the national command authorities 
have to make. Prior Secretaries of Defense and Chairmen of the Joint 
Chiefs of Staff have proposed criteria to guide decisionmaking for such 
situations.
    What factors would you consider in making recommendations to the 
President on the use of force?
    Answer. Committing our troops to any military operation is a grave 
decision, and one I, if confirmed, would make carefully and cautiously. 
In making a recommendation to the President on the use of military 
force, I would consider all the factors previous Secretaries of Defense 
have identified. These would include: national interest and strategic 
objectives; domestic and international legal basis for action; our 
ability to achieve our objectives and achieve a successful outcome 
through use of force; the unique need for military force and 
alternative means, particularly non-military, for achieving our 
interests; the risks to our other interests and our force; and the 
sufficiency of sustained public support for use of force.
    Question. What circumstances should pertain for you to recommend 
that the President employ preemptive force?
    Answer. The United States must reserve the right, consistent with 
longstanding principles of self-defense, to use military force if 
intelligence or other information clearly demonstrates that force is 
necessary to prevent or blunt an imminent attack on the United States 
or an ally. If confirmed, in advising the President regarding the use 
of force to preempt an attack, I would consider such factors as: the 
nature and immediacy of the threat; the probability of an attack; 
whether a pattern of activity demonstrates the intent of an actor to 
carry out an attack; the likely scale of the attack and the injury, 
loss, or damage likely to result absent preemptive action; and the 
likelihood that there will be other opportunities to undertake 
effective action in self-defense. I would also ensure that, if force is 
determined to be necessary, we adhere to standards that govern the use 
of force and work to strengthen our legitimacy in taking action, 
including seeking broader international support.
    Question. What degree of certainty do you believe is necessary 
before the United States would use preemptive force?
    Answer. Any decision to use preemptive force must be informed by 
the best available intelligence regarding the threat that is to be 
countered. There should always be a sound factual basis for concluding 
that force is necessary to protect the United States or an ally from 
attack. If confirmed, I would examine the underlying intelligence 
critically as such a decision must not be taken lightly. I do not 
believe, however, that it is necessary that we know the precise timing, 
location, or nature of the hostile attack as a prerequisite to using 
force to counter or stop an attack on the United States or an ally.
                  national security budget reductions
    Question. Part 1 of the Budget Control Act (BCA) enacted on August 
2, 2011 established budget caps designed to realize $917 billion in 
budget savings in Federal discretionary spending over the period from 
fiscal year 2012 to fiscal year 2021. As a result, the administration's 
DOD current budget plan for fiscal years 2012 to 2021 is $487 billion 
lower than the $6.14 trillion it had projected a year earlier for the 
same 10-year period. This reduction amounts to nearly 8 percent 
compared to the previous plan.
    Do you believe that defense spending reductions of this magnitude 
(absent a sequester) can be accomplished without significant adverse 
impact on our national security?
    Answer. Based on my review to date, my answer is yes. I believe the 
Department's strategy can be accomplished within the constraints of the 
BCA. But only if the Department has to retain the flexibility to adjust 
the size of its forces and infrastructure, and take steps to control 
its costs, in accordance with the administration's present strategy and 
budget.
    Question. How would you assess the national military strategy to 
deal with the changed budget environment?
    Answer. I believe the Department has taken a hard look at the new 
security environment and developed a strategy that appropriately 
allocates reduced defense resources to the highest priority needs and 
ensures our national security objectives are met. If confirmed, I will 
further assess the strategy according to changes in the security 
environment and continued fiscal pressure.
    Question. What are the standards by which you will measure the 
adequacy of DOD funding, if confirmed?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would measure the adequacy of DOD funding 
by its ability to ensure that the Department is able to meet the 
country's security challenges and preserve the strongest military in 
the world.
    Question. If confirmed, in this era of budget austerity, how will 
you prioritize the objectives of completing the mission in Afghanistan, 
resetting of the force, investing in the future force, and meeting 
ongoing operational commitments around the world?
    Answer. Right now, I believe the Department can implement the 
administration's present strategy, which carefully balances the above 
objectives. I understand that the immediate needs of completing the 
mission in Afghanistan and ongoing operational commitments cannot 
jeopardize resetting the force and investing in our future. If 
confirmed, I will work to ensure that budget decisions are made 
carefully so that we maintain a healthy balance among those near-term 
and longer-term objectives. I will continue to refine the Department's 
spending in line with the priorities of the President's strategic 
objectives. However, if multi-year reductions in funding take place 
(such as those required by sequestration), the Department would need to 
significantly revise the defense strategy and, in all probability, 
would need to make some hard choices about which of our current 
national defense capabilities we could afford to retain.
                     readiness of the armed forces
    Question. The Joint Chiefs recently stated that ``the readiness of 
our Armed Forces is at a tipping point. We are on the brink of creating 
a hollow force due to an unprecedented convergence of budget conditions 
and legislation that could require the Department to retain more forces 
than requested while underfunding that force's readiness.''
    How do you currently assess the readiness of the Armed Forces?
    Answer. I am deeply impressed by the caliber and capabilities of 
our military forces. It is vitally important that they be ready to 
respond to the Nation's needs, and I am concerned that further budget 
cuts will negatively affect readiness. If confirmed, I will closely 
monitor the readiness of the force.
    Question. Do you agree with the Joint Chiefs that readiness is at 
tipping point?
    Answer. Maintaining ready forces is a priority, and I am concerned 
by the Joint Chiefs' assessment. If confirmed, I will work with the 
Joint Chiefs to better understand the basis of their assessment and how 
we can most effectively address the readiness challenges our military 
faces.
    Question. If confirmed, how would you assess the impact of budget 
conditions on the issue expressed by the Joint Chiefs of a hollow 
force?
    Answer. My sense is that the concerns the Joint Chiefs have 
expressed about readiness come from a variety of factors, including the 
challenges of recovering from 10 years of operational stress, of 
transitioning to a broader range of operations, and of doing all of 
this in the face of fiscal austerity and budget uncertainty. If 
confirmed, I will carefully monitor how all of these factors are posing 
risks to readiness and will work closely with the military and civilian 
leadership of the Department to mitigate those risks to the greatest 
extent possible.
    Question. How would you define a hollow force?
    Answer. A hollow force is one that has been rendered incapable of 
performing the mission that we expect it to conduct. With a hollow 
force, units do not have the resources, personnel, equipment, and 
training necessary to make them capable or ready to execute the defense 
strategies that secure our country.
                  budget uncertainly and sequestration
    Question. DOD is currently facing budget uncertainty due to the 
fact that it is operating under a Continuing Resolution (CR) through at 
least March 27, 2013 and due to the possibility that, absent a budget 
deal, the BCA will require a sequester of security funding totaling 
more than $40 billion starting on March 1, 2013. DOD officials have 
noted that, if CR is extended through the end of the current fiscal 
year, in its current form, readiness would suffer. They have also noted 
that a sequester could seriously threaten our ability to implement our 
current defense strategy. Secretary Panetta has stated that a sequester 
would have a ``devastating'' impact on DOD.
    What is your understanding of the impact a full-year Continuing 
Resolution would have on DOD?
    Answer. A year-long CR reduces the Department's funding flexibility 
by putting it into a straightjacket, spending money on last year's 
priorities not this year's. Continuing Resolutions force the Department 
to operate inefficiently because it does not know what projects will be 
funded or at what level of funding. The money provided in the 
Continuing Resolution does not provide sufficient funding in the right 
places, particularly critical operating accounts which could harm 
military readiness. In addition, Continuing Resolutions generally push 
the Department to use month-to-month contracts and prohibits doing 
``new starts'' in military construction or acquisition programs, which 
leads to inefficiency and backlogs in contracting.
    Question. What do you believe would be the impact on DOD of a full 
sequester in fiscal year 2013?
    Answer. As Secretary Panetta has repeatedly stated, sequestration--
both the size and the arbitrary manner of these cuts--would be 
devastating to the Department. It would harm military readiness and 
disrupt each and every investment program. Based on my assessment to 
date, I share his concerns. I urge Congress to eliminate the sequester 
threat permanently and pass a balanced deficit-reduction plan. Impacts 
of sequester could include the need to revise the defense strategy, 
fewer day-to-day global activities reducing our presence and 
partnerships, less training including cuts to flying and steaming hours 
which would reduce readiness, near universal disruption of investment 
including 2,500 procurement programs, research projects, and military 
construction; reduced and delayed weapons system buys with resulting 
price increases, furloughs and hiring freezes for civilian workers 
resulting in reduced maintenance of weapons systems, oversight of 
contracts and financial systems; negative effects on morale and welfare 
of the force including recruiting and retention problems.
    Question. What is your understanding of the impact that the 
combination of a full-year Continuing Resolution and a sequester would 
have on the readiness of the Armed Forces?
    Answer. It is my understanding that under this scenario, the 
Department would be forced to cut over $40 billion from our budget in a 
little over half a year, using a mechanistic formula to do it. It would 
result in 20 percent cuts in the Department's operating budgets. As the 
Joint Chiefs have warned, such cuts, if allowed to occur, would damage 
our readiness, our people, and our military families. It would result 
in the grounding of aircraft and returning ships to port, reducing the 
Department's global presence and ability to rapidly respond to 
contingencies. Vital training would be reduced by half of current plans 
and the Department would be unable to reset equipment from Afghanistan 
in a timely manner. The Department would reduce training and 
maintenance for nondeploying units and would be forced to reduce 
procurement of vital weapons systems and suffer the subsequent schedule 
delays and price increases. Civilian employees would be furloughed for 
up to 22 days. All of these effects also negatively impact long-term 
readiness. It would send a terrible signal to our military and civilian 
workforce, to those we hope to recruit, and to both our allies and 
adversaries around the world.
    Question. If confirmed what role would you play toward enacting a 
fiscal year 2013 Defense Appropriations Bill and avoiding a sequester?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would continue to urge Congress to pass a 
full-year appropriations bill for DOD and for other Federal agencies so 
that the Department and other Federal agencies may be run efficiently, 
with the ability to adapt to changing circumstances, as the taxpayers 
expect and deserve.
            financial management and business transformation
    Question. DOD spends billions of dollars every year to acquire, 
operate, and upgrade business systems needed to support the warfighter, 
including systems related to the management of contracts, finances, the 
supply chain, and support infrastructure. Despite these expenditures, 
the Department's business systems are stovepiped, duplicative and non-
integrated. Also, the Department's ability to leverage these systems to 
transform how it conducts its business missions has been frustrated by 
its resistance to re-engineering its business processes effectively. As 
a result, the Department remains unable to produce timely, accurate and 
complete information to support management decisions. For this reason, 
the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has identified defense 
financial management and business transformation as exposing taxpayer 
dollars to a ``high risk'' of waste, fraud, and abuse.
    If confirmed, how would you ensure that the financial management 
and business transformation problems of DOD receive priority attention 
at the senior management level and throughout the defense enterprise?
    Answer. Improving financial management capability is very 
important, especially in light of the fiscal challenges facing the 
Department and the country. I understand plans exist to continue the 
improvement of the Department's business processes and, if confirmed, I 
will ensure that senior leadership--including the Chief Financial 
Officer, the Deputy Chief Management Officer, and the Chief Information 
Officer--focus appropriate attention on this effort by holding them 
accountable for progress against these plans.
    Question. Do you support the objective of having the Department 
achieve an auditable financial statement by the end of fiscal year 
2017?
    Answer. Yes. I support the effort and will maintain the 
Department's commitment to producing audit-ready financial statements 
by the congressional deadline of September 2017, with an audit 
beginning by the end of calendar year 2017.
    Question. What steps would you take if the Department fails to 
reach this goal?
    Answer. I would want to evaluate the nature of the problem, the 
reasons the goal was not met, and the remediation options available to 
get the Department back on track before determining the actions to be 
taken.
    Question. Do you support the objective of having the Department 
achieve an auditable statement of budgetary resources by the end of 
fiscal year 2014?
    Answer. Yes, I agree with current priorities that focus first on 
the budgetary information most useful in managing the Department. I 
understand there is a plan to ensure the budgetary statement is ready 
to be audited by September 2014.
    Question. What steps would you take if the Department fails to 
reach this goal?
    Answer. I understand the plan to meet that deadline has received a 
very high priority at all levels of the Department, and if confirmed, I 
would sustain this as a high priority and hold senior leadership 
accountable for reaching this goal. If problems are encountered that 
would put this goal at risk, I would evaluate the nature of the 
problem, the reasons the goal was not met, and the remediation options 
available to get the Department back on track. I would also ensure that 
Congress is kept apprise of the Department's progress.
 department of defense and department of veterans affairs collaboration
    Question. The Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs (VA) have 
in recent years increased collaboration between the respective 
departments to support servicemembers as they transition to veteran 
status. This support includes access to health and mental health care, 
improved disability evaluation, and coordination of compensation and 
other benefits.
    If confirmed, what role would you expect to play in ensuring that 
the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs achieve the 
administration's objectives in DOD and VA collaboration?
    Answer. I have been working to improve the transition of our 
servicemembers to civilian life for most of my life. If confirmed, I am 
looking forward to taking a very active role in this area. The 
Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki is a longtime 
friend and if confirmed, I will continue the close partnership with him 
that has existed under Secretaries Gates and Panetta. I will continue 
the practice of holding regular Secretarial-level meetings and will 
closely monitor the progress of the many important joint initiatives 
between the two Departments.
                systems and support for wounded warriors
    Question. Servicemembers who are wounded or injured in combat 
operations deserve the highest priority from their Service for support 
services, healing and recuperation, rehabilitation, evaluation for 
return to duty, successful transition from active duty if required, and 
continuing support beyond retirement or discharge. Yet, as the 
revelations at Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC) in 2007 
illustrated, the Services were not prepared to meet the needs of 
significant numbers of returning wounded servicemembers. Despite the 
enactment of legislation and renewed emphasis, many challenges remain, 
including a growing population of servicemembers awaiting disability 
evaluation.
    What is your assessment of the progress made to date by DOD and the 
Services to improve the care, management, and transition of seriously 
ill and injured servicemembers and their families?
    Answer. I believe that important progress in the care, management, 
and transition of seriously ill and injured servicemembers has been 
made in the years since the revelations at WRAMC, though there is more 
work to be done. It will be a top priority to ensure the best quality 
care for our seriously ill and injured servicemembers and their 
families. My understanding is Secretary Panetta directed a detailed 
review of the Integrated Disability Evaluation System (IDES). If 
confirmed, I look forward to the opportunity to reviewing the details 
of that effort. I will also work closely with the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs to ensure that the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs 
programs are fully complementary and that wounded servicemembers 
experience a seamless system of care as they transition to veteran 
status.
    Question. What are the strengths upon which continued progress 
should be based?
    Answer. My understanding is that significant progress has been made 
in linking an individual with their medical record in a central data 
repository, and making this information available to any DOD medical 
treatment facility or Veterans Affairs facility. This appears to 
provide seamless health care to our members. If confirmed, I will 
continue to partner with the VA in this area. Although I believe there 
is more work to be done in improving the care of our seriously ill and 
injured servicemembers and their families, this issue is a top priority 
of the senior leadership of the Department and a strength that I will 
continue to build on. I will also look to build on the close 
collaboration between the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs 
in caring for our servicemembers, veterans, and their families.
    Question. What are the weaknesses that need to be corrected?
    Answer. One weakness is the lack of sufficient mental health care 
providers at both the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. 
While this is mostly a function of the overall shortage of people with 
this specialty, I know DOD is working hard to address this problem, 
through increased funding and recruitment. Another weakness that I am 
aware of is that Veterans Affairs and DOD have multiple caregivers, 
overwhelming patients and their families. I understand Secretary 
Panetta and Secretary Shinseki signed an agreement to help wounded 
warriors navigate through our systems, by naming a lead care 
coordinator for each wounded warrior. If confirmed, I will closely 
monitor the implementation of this agreement and work to improve upon 
it. There is also duplication and overlap in the various services and 
care programs provided by the Department, the Military Services, and 
Veterans Affairs, and I would want to make sure that all such programs 
are fully coordinated, easily accessible, and comprehensible for our 
wounded, ill, and injured servicemembers and their families.
    Question. If confirmed, are there additional strategies and 
resources that you would pursue to increase support for wounded 
servicemembers and their families, and to monitor their progress in 
returning to duty or to civilian life?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would look to build on innovative programs 
and partnerships--both with other Federal agencies, as well as with 
State and local governments and private and community organizations--
that support our wounded, ill, and injured servicemembers and their 
families. For instance, the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund has added 
invaluably to the care and treatment of servicemembers and veterans 
with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and psychological health issues 
through the National Intrepid Center of Excellence, and they are in the 
process of building state-of-the-art satellite treatment centers at 
nine of DOD's largest installations. I am also heartened by cross-
agency efforts like the $100 million investment announced last year by 
the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs to improve diagnosis 
and treatment of mild TBI and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
    Question. What is your assessment of the adequacy of access to care 
and care management for Federal civilian employees who are ill or 
injured in theater, including evaluation and response to traumatic 
brain injury and post-traumatic stress?
    Answer. My understanding is that Federal civilian employees who are 
injured or ill in theater have been treated by theater military 
treatment facilities just as Active Duty members would be. Once 
medically evacuated out of theater, depending on their medical needs, 
they are transferred to an appropriate civilian institution. If 
confirmed, I would seek to ensure that Federal civilian employees in 
theater receive the quality care and care management befitting those 
who put themselves in harm's way on behalf of the Nation.
    Question. Studies conducted as a result of the revelations at WRAMC 
pointed to the need to reform the disability evaluation system (DES). 
The IDES was established to integrate the DOD and Department of 
Veterans Affairs disability systems to improve and expedite processing 
of servicemembers through the DES.
    What is your assessment of the need to further streamline and 
improve the IDES?
    Answer. While the introduction of the joint IDES has on the whole 
been an improvement over the separate Departments of Defense and 
Veterans Affairs legacy systems, there is still much room for further 
improvement, particularly with regard to timeliness. If confirmed, I 
will ensure the Department continues to press forward, in close 
collaboration with Veterans Affairs, with further improvements to the 
IDES.
    Question. If confirmed, how will you address any need for change, 
particularly the Army's problem with an increasing number of soldiers 
who are not medically fit for deployment, but who remain on Active Duty 
while they process through the lengthy IDES process?
    Answer. I am aware that this is an issue, particularly for the 
Army. I do not have specific recommendations at this time, but if 
confirmed, I will work with the leadership of the military services on 
ways that we can better balance the need to provide servicemembers with 
a timely and fair disability evaluation with the need to maintain 
acceptable levels of deployable personnel.
                       homosexual conduct policy
    Question. The law commonly referred to as ``Don't Ask, Don't Tell'' 
was repealed effective September 20, 2011. As part of the 
implementation of this repeal, the Secretary of Defense appointed a 
benefits review group to conduct a review of all potential benefits 
that could be made available to same-sex spouses. The report of this 
review group is long overdue and has been repeatedly delayed.
    What is your view of the repeal of ``Don't Ask, Don't Tell?''
    Answer. I fully support the repeal of ``Don't Ask, Don't Tell'' and 
value the service of all those who fight for our country. I fully 
support gay and lesbian men and women serving openly in the U.S. 
military and am committed to a full implementation of the repeal of 
``Don't Ask, Don't Tell''.
    Question. What is your assessment of the implementation of the 
repeal of this law?
    Answer. I understand that the senior military leadership have 
engaged in a year-long monitoring process and found that repeal of 
``Don't Ask, Don't Tell'' has not had any impacts on readiness, 
effectiveness, unit cohesion, recruiting, and retention. At the same 
time, I realize that there is still some work to be done to achieve the 
full implementation of repeal, particularly with regard to the benefits 
available to the families of gay and lesbian servicemembers.
    Question. What is the status of the report of the benefits review 
group? When is this group expected to issue its report?
    Answer. I understand that this review is not taking the form of a 
report, per se, but has involved assembling detailed information on 
individual benefits (including whether each such benefit might be made 
available under current law, and options for how to do so) to support 
decision making by the senior civilian and military leadership of the 
Department, and also that those decisions are currently under active 
consideration. If confirmed, I will review the work that has been 
undertaken during the course of the benefits review and will work 
closely with the DOD civilian and military leadership to move forward 
expeditiously on this issue.
    Question. What is your view on the issue of providing military 
benefits to same-sex partners?
    Answer. As I have stated previously, I fully support the repeal of 
``Don't Ask, Don't Tell,'' and value the service of all those who fight 
for our country. If confirmed, I will do everything possible to the 
extent permissible under current law to provide equal benefits to the 
families of all our servicemembers.
    Question. If confirmed, will you ensure that completion of the 
report of the Benefits Review Group is expedited and provided to 
Congress?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will work closely with the DOD civilian and 
military leadership to move forward expeditiously on this issue and 
will inform the appropriate congressional committees of decisions as 
they are made.
                          religious guidelines
    Question. The Independent Review Related to the Tragedy at Fort 
Hood observed that ``DOD policy regarding religious accommodation lacks 
the clarity necessary to help commanders distinguish appropriate 
religious practices from those that might indicate a potential for 
violence or self-radicalization.'' Recommendation 2.7 of the Final 
Recommendations urged the Department to update policy to clarify 
guidelines for religious accommodation and Recommendation 2.8 urged the 
Department to task the Defense Science Board to ``undertake a multi-
disciplinary study to identify behavioral indicators of violence and 
self-radicalization. . . .''
    What is your view of these recommendations?
    Answer. Ensuring appropriate accommodations for the free exercise 
of religions and protecting servicemembers from violence and harm are 
both of vital importance. It is my understanding that, pursuant to 
Recommendation 2.7, the Department updated its policy on religious 
accommodation to ensure religious freedoms and practices are 
accommodated to the fullest extent possible considering mission 
readiness, discipline, and unit cohesion. Regarding Recommendation 2.8, 
the Department did task the Defense Science Board (DSB) to undertake a 
study. The DSB recently completed their study and found that it could 
not determine a specific list of behaviors that would indicate risk of 
violent/extremist behavior. If I am confirmed, I will review the 
implementation of the recommendations of the Fort Hood Review.
    Question. What is your understanding of current policies and 
programs of DOD regarding religious practices in the military?
    Answer. It is my understanding that policies and programs of DOD 
regarding religious practices in the military seek to ensure 
servicemembers' rights to observe the tenets of their respective 
religions, as well as to hold no specific religious conviction or 
affiliation.
    Question. In your view, do these policies appropriately accommodate 
the free exercise of religion and other beliefs without impinging on 
those who have different beliefs, including no religious belief?
    Answer. Yes, in my view, current policies appropriately accommodate 
the free exercise of religion for all servicemembers in the pluralistic 
environment that is the U.S. military. If confirmed, I will continue to 
monitor and assess these policies.
    Question. In your view, do existing policies and practices 
regarding public prayers offered by military chaplains in a variety of 
formal and informal settings strike the proper balance between a 
chaplain's ability to pray in accordance with his or her religious 
beliefs and the rights of other servicemembers with different beliefs, 
including no religious beliefs?
    Answer. It is my understanding that existing policies provide the 
military chaplains with sufficient guidance that allows them to 
balance, in both formal and informal settings, their own faith 
practices with the rights of others who may hold different or no 
religious beliefs. I recognize that this at times can be a difficult 
balance to achieve, and if confirmed, I would work with the civilian 
and military leadership of the Department and with Congress to ensure 
DOD continues to do so.
    Question. If confirmed, will you work to ensure that a scientific 
factbased approach to understanding radicalization will drive the 
Department's relevant policies on this topic?
    Answer. Yes. If confirmed, I would review the Department's existing 
policies and its plans to address these challenges and determine what, 
if any, changes should be made. I agree that any changes to how the 
Department approaches this issue should be based on a solid scientific 
and factual foundation.
    Question. Current policy in the Department gives discretion to 
military leaders to decide whether requests to waive uniform and 
appearance standards should be granted based on religious beliefs.
    In your view, do DOD policies appropriately accommodate religious 
practices that require adherents to wear items of religious apparel?
    Answer. It is my understanding that current policies allow for 
consideration of accommodations of religious apparel that do not 
interfere with the performance of military duties. If confirmed, I 
would work with the Military Services to ensure that they strike the 
right balance between military uniform and appearance standards and 
personal religious practices.
                      muslims in the u.s. military
    Question. Are you concerned that the attack at Fort Hood could lead 
to harassment or even violence against Muslims in the military?
    Answer. The attack at Fort Hood was a tragedy. It is essential that 
the circumstances surrounding the attack not compromise the military's 
core values regarding the free exercise of religion and treating every 
servicemember with dignity and respect. Each servicemember has the 
right to practice his or her religious faith without fear of 
persecution or retribution.
    Question. If confirmed, what strategies would you advocate to 
address the potential for harassment or violence against Muslims in the 
U.S. military?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will not tolerate harassment or 
mistreatment against Muslims in the military, or against any 
servicemember based on their religious faith. This sort of behavior or 
any form of cruelty and maltreatment is inconsistent with the 
military's core values, detracts from combat capability, and has no 
place in the Armed Forces. I will expect commanders and leaders at all 
levels to maintain an environment that promotes dignity and respect, 
and will hold them accountable for preventing harassment or 
mistreatment.
                 sexual assault prevention and response
    Question. Sexual assaults continue to be a significant issue in the 
military. Victims of sexual assault report that they are victimized 
twice: first by attackers in their own ranks and then by unresponsive 
or inadequate treatment for the victim and failure of the chain of 
command to hold assailants accountable. The Annual Report on Sexual 
Harassment and Violence at the Military Service Academies, released in 
December 2012, documents that while the military academies are in 
compliance with DOD policies, sexual assault and harassment remain a 
problem in each academy. Sexual assaults continue to be persistent 
problem in the Services, as evidenced by the ongoing prosecutions of 
military training instructors for sexual misconduct with trainees at 
Air Force basic training at Lackland Air Force Base. Secretary Panetta 
has recently announced several new initiatives to address the sexual 
assault problems in the military, including comprehensive assessments 
of initial training of enlisted personnel and officers, creation of 
special victim capabilities, and limiting initial disposition authority 
to Special Court-Martial Convening Authorities in the grade of O-6 or 
higher.
    What is your assessment of the Department's policies for prevention 
and response to sexual assaults in the military?
    Answer. Sexual assault will absolutely not be tolerated in DOD. It 
is a direct affront to the military's core value to protect all members 
of the Armed Forces. Current levels of sexual assault are unacceptably 
high. I know that the Department has put considerable effort into the 
development and implementation of new policies and procedures to 
prevent the crime of sexual assault, support victims, and hold 
offenders appropriately accountable. But I also know that more needs to 
be done. Secretary Panetta and the Joint Chiefs of Staff have made this 
issue a top priority. If confirmed, will do the same, and ensure that 
the Department continues its commitment to address sexual assault in a 
comprehensive and persistent manner.
    Question. What is your view of the steps the Services have taken to 
prevent and respond to sexual assaults in combat zones, including 
assaults against contractor personnel?
    Answer. I do not have enough information to make a comprehensive 
assessment of sexual assault prevention and response in deployed 
environments at this time. It is my understanding that any deployed 
personnel who are victims, whether servicemembers, civilians, or 
contractors, receive appropriate emergency medical care and support. I 
also firmly believe that there must be strict accountability for those 
who perpetrate such assaults in deployed areas. If confirmed, I will 
ensure the Department continues to address sexual assault in a 
comprehensive manner--across all Services, in all locations, and for 
all personnel.
    Question. What is your view of the adequacy of the training and 
resources the Services have in place to investigate and respond to 
allegations of sexual assault?
    Answer. It is my understanding that all Services have established 
guidelines for a 24-hour, 7-day-a-week sexual assault response 
capability for victims in all locations, including deployed areas. With 
regard to investigations, I understand the Department has multiple 
efforts underway to enhance its ability to investigate and respond to 
sexual assault, child abuse, and domestic violence. If confirmed, I 
will make it a priority to sustain and build on these enhanced 
capabilities for the investigation of ``special victim'' crimes.
    Question. What is your view of the willingness and ability of the 
Services to hold assailants accountable for their acts?
    Answer. I strongly believe that anyone who commits a sexual assault 
in the military needs to be held accountable. The Department has a zero 
tolerance policy, but that is not enough. Accountability is key. To 
this end, I fully support Secretary Panetta's decision to elevate 
initial disposition of sexual assault cases to the level of Colonel or 
Navy Captain, or higher. This action helps ensures our more seasoned, 
senior commanders determine what actions are appropriate in response to 
allegations of sexual assault. It is my belief that military commanders 
are essential to making sexual assault prevention and response efforts 
successful. But in order to hold assailants accountable, we must have 
victims who are willing to come forward and report these crimes. To do 
that, victims need to have confidence in our system of military 
justice. That is why I also look forward to hearing more about the 
impact of the Air Force's pilot program assigning an attorney to each 
victim of sexual assault who requests one to represent them. I believe 
this could be a very good way to increase the number of victims who are 
willing to come forward.
    Question. If confirmed, what actions will you take to ensure senior 
level direction and oversight of efforts to prevent and respond to 
sexual assaults?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will make sexual assault prevention and 
response a personal priority and will work closely with the Secretaries 
of the Military Departments and the Chiefs of the Military Services to 
ensure that DOD maintains the current high level of senior leadership 
focus on this issue.
              increased use of national guard and reserves
    Question. Over the last 2 decades, the National Guard and Reserves 
have experienced their largest and most sustained employment since 
World War II. Numerous problems have arisen over time in the planning 
and procedures for mobilization and demobilization, e.g., inadequate 
health screening and medical response to service-connected injuries or 
illnesses, antiquated pay systems, limited transition assistance 
programs upon demobilization, and inefficient policies regarding 
members of the Individual Ready Reserve. Reserve Force management 
policies and systems have been characterized in the past as 
``inefficient and rigid'' and readiness levels have been adversely 
affected by equipment shortages, cross-leveling, and reset policies. 
The recently enacted section 12304b of title 10, U.S.C., authorizes 
Service Secretaries to mobilize for up to 365 consecutive days Reserve 
component units and individuals in support of pre-planned combatant 
command missions. Current defense strategy provides for a reduction in 
conventional ground forces, an increase in special forces, and the 
establishment of a rotational presence in Europe, the Middle East, and 
anywhere U.S. interests are threatened. Some in the press have called 
this a ``lily pad'' approach, and it potentially dovetails with an 
operational view of the Reserve components.
    What is your assessment of the Reserve and how it will fit into 
this new strategy of smaller, more lethal forces rotating into and out 
of many locations of strategic interest?
    Answer. The Reserves and National Guard have clearly proven the 
ability to accomplish any assigned mission overseas or at home. They 
will continue to play a vital role as we move out of the past decade of 
war in Iraq and Afghanistan and the Department shapes the force to 
implement the new defense strategy and to respond to the challenges of 
a new era.
    Question. What is your understanding of the appropriate size and 
makeup of the Reserve components in light of the current defense 
strategy?
    Answer. I understand that questions about the size and makeup of 
the Active and Reserve components are currently under consideration as 
the Department continues to implement the new defense strategy and 
respond to the current fiscal environment. If confirmed, I will work 
closely with the Services and the Chief of the National Guard Bureau to 
determine the most effective mix and makeup of Active, Reserve, and 
Guard personnel to support the defense strategy.
    Question. What is your assessment of advances made in improving 
Reserve and Guard component mobilization and demobilization procedures, 
and in what areas do problems still exist?
    Answer. I understand that there have been many advances made in 
policies and procedures governing the utilization of the Guard and 
Reserves, as well as advancing the pre- and post-Active Duty benefits. 
These have given Reserve component personnel the ability to plan for 
periods of utilization followed by substantial time performing inactive 
duty at home. This provides a predictable cycle of Active Duty and 
increases readiness by utilizing the Reserve components on a more 
regular basis. If confirmed, I will ensure these procedures are 
continually assessed to ensure they are providing the Reserve 
components the support they need and deserve.
    Question. What do you consider to be the most significant enduring 
changes to the enabling of an operational reserve aimed at ensuring 
Reserve component and Guard readiness for future mobilization 
requirements?
    Answer. In my view, the most significant and enduring change in 
this area has been the use of the Reserve component as a full partner 
in the overall force at large. In particular, the experience and skills 
that members of the Reserve component have gained from preparing and 
deploying over the past decade have notably increased the overall 
readiness of the Reserve component, and the Department will continue to 
make use of these enhanced skills and readiness in the future.
    Question. Do you see a need to modify current statutory authorities 
for the mobilization of members of the National Guard and Reserves or 
to further enhance their ability to perform various national security 
missions?
    Answer. I appreciate Congress' willingness in the NDAA for Fiscal 
Year 2012 to increase authorities to fully use the Reserves as a 
rotational force. If confirmed, I will consider this question in light 
of the new strategy, but at the present time I believe that appropriate 
policies and procedures are in place and no laws need to be changed.
                               dwell time
    Question. While dwell time is improving as our forces draw down in 
Afghanistan, many Active Duty military members are still not 
experiencing the dwell time goal of 2 years at home for every year 
deployed.
    In your view, when will the Active component dwell time goal be 
met?
    Answer. I understand that all of the Services, on average, are 
meeting or exceeding the Department's dwell time goal of 2 years at 
home for every year deployed, or 1:2, for the Active component. If 
confirmed, I will continue to monitor this issue closely.
    Question. When will dwell time objectives be met for the Reserve 
components?
    Answer. I understand Reserve component dwell time is improving, but 
has not reached the Department's dwell time goal of 5 years at home for 
every 1 year of active duty, or 1:5. If confirmed, I will continue to 
work toward the goal of a 1:5 dwell time ratio for the Reserve 
component for all of the Services.
             active-duty and reserve component end strength
    Question. The Department last year announced its 5-year plan to 
reduce Active Duty end strengths by over 100,000 servicemembers by 
2017, and the Reserve components by another 21,000 over the same 
period. These cuts do not include any additional personnel reductions 
that could result from sequestration or any agreement to avoid 
sequestration.
    Do you agree with this plan to reduce Active Duty and Reserve 
component end strengths?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will review the plan, but I believe that we 
must be able to balance end-strength, readiness, and modernization. The 
end strength drawdown allows us to achieve the right size force and 
keep it modern. The plan is designed to maintain capable and ready 
military forces while managing reductions in a way that ``keeps faith'' 
with servicemembers who have been at war for the past 10 years. While 
the plan will reduce Active Duty end strength by 100,000, I believe the 
Department has scaled back the Reserve component cut to less than 
21,000 (17,000). Preserving the Guard and Reserve reduces the risk of 
reductions and hedges against uncertainty by providing capacity and 
capability that can be called up if needed. As future national security 
conditions change, the Department's planned drawdown could change 
accordingly.
    Question. What is your view of how these planned end-strength 
reductions will affect dwell time ratios?
    Answer. The Army and Marine Corps end strength reductions are 
synchronized with plans for the drawdown in Afghanistan. The 
Department's dwell time goal is 1:2 Active, 1:5 for Reserves. With some 
exceptions, the current dwell is 1:1 Active, 1:5 Reserve. If the 
Afghanistan force drawdown stays on track, the duty/dwell ratio goal 
for components should be achieved. If confirmed, I will carefully 
monitor the dwell time of our servicemembers since it is critical that 
dwell times be sufficient to preserve the wellbeing of our force.
    Question. What effect would inability to meet dwell time objectives 
have on your decision to implement the planned end strength reductions?
    Answer. Preserving the All-Volunteer Force is a top priority, so it 
is important to avoid stressing the Active and Reserve components. If 
confirmed, I would assess our ability to achieve our strategic missions 
and dwell time objectives prior to and during implementation of the 
planned Army and Marine Corps strength reductions.
    Question. What additional military personnel reductions do you 
envision if the Department were required to sequester funding as 
outlined in the BCA?
    Answer. The President notified Congress of his intent to exempt all 
military personnel accounts from sequester for fiscal year 2013, if a 
sequester is necessary. However, if the Department were required to 
sequester funding, I believe that it would first require a revision of 
the Defense Strategic Guidance announced by the President last January. 
The current strategy could not be met with the significantly diminished 
resources that sequester would impose. The revised strategy could very 
well impact all components of our workforce--Government civilians and 
contractors in the near-term as well as Active Duty and Reserve 
component military if the sequester continues beyond fiscal year 2013.
    Question. In your view, what tools do the Department and Services 
need to get down to authorized strengths in the future, and which of 
these require congressional authorization?
    Answer. The workforce management tools that Congress provided in 
the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 will be useful for the drawdown. The 
Department continues to examine whether other workforce management 
authorities are needed and will submit those to Congress as necessary. 
In addition, in the event that the Department has to sequester funding, 
the Department would likely revisit the size of all components of the 
workforce--Active Duty military, Reserve component military, Government 
civilians, and contractors. After such a review, the Department might 
require, and would then request, additional authorization for tools to 
meet reduced end strength goals.
                          recruiting standards
    Question. Recruiting highly qualified individuals for military 
service during wartime in a cost-constrained environment presents 
unique challenges.
    What is your assessment of the adequacy of current standards 
regarding qualifications for enlistment in the Armed Forces?
    Answer. Today's enlistment qualification standards are well-
defined, supported by years of experience, and have stood the test of 
time. They are driven by the need to provide the Services with men and 
women who are prepared to adapt to the rigors of military life and meet 
performance requirements. The adequacy of these standards is evidenced 
by over 11 years of continuous armed conflict manned by a high quality 
All-Volunteer Force.
    Question. In your view, is there any way to increase the pool of 
eligible enlistees without sacrificing quality?
    Answer. My understanding is the Services are always exploring ways 
to improve their ability to expand the recruiting market without 
sacrificing quality. As an example, this year the Department expanded 
its ability to enlist graduates with alternative diplomas while 
minimizing first term attrition. The Services also may be able to 
augment their screening procedures by incorporating other measures, 
such as temperament, to identify applicants who are likely to adapt 
well to the military. If confirmed, I will work with the Services to 
continually find new ways to expand the recruit market.
                         women in the military
    Question. The issue of the appropriate role of women in the Armed 
Forces is a matter of continuing interest to Congress and the American 
public. Last year, DOD released a report to Congress, required by 
section 535 of the Ike Skelton National Defense Authorization Act 
(NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2011 (Public Law 111-383), reviewing the laws 
and policies restricting the service of female members of the Armed 
Forces, and provided notice to Congress that the Department would open 
positions in ground combat units at the battalion level to women in 
occupational specialties for which they are already qualified to serve, 
and would eliminate the so-called co-location policy. According to the 
report, the changes resulted in over 14,000 positions being opened to 
women that were previously denied. Since then, the Marine Corps opened 
training positions at its Infantry Officer course to female marines, 
and the Army recently announced opening some special operation aviation 
positions to female servicemembers.
    What is your view of the appropriate role for women in the Armed 
Forces?
    Answer. Women are indispensable to our military. They have served 
ably alongside their male counterparts in Iraq and Afghanistan in a 
variety of roles. I support the expansion of opportunities for women to 
serve. If confirmed, I will ensure that the process of opening 
previously closed positions takes place expeditiously and at the same 
time that our readiness and ability to defend the Nation are not 
compromised by these changes.
    Question. Do you believe additional specialties should be opened up 
for service by women? If so, which specialties?
    Answer. On January 24, 2013, Secretary Panetta rescinded the 1994 
Direct Ground Combat Definition and Assignment Rule and directed the 
integration of women into previously closed positions by January 1, 
2016. If confirmed, I will continue implementation of that new policy, 
including its emphasis on the effectiveness of the fighting force and 
the development of gender-neutral standards.
    Question. Do you believe any changes in the current policy or 
legislation regarding women in combat are needed or warranted?
    Answer. I am not aware of further necessary changes at this time. 
If confirmed, I will closely monitor the implementation of the January 
24, 2013 policy and if I see that additional policies or legislation 
are needed, I will make recommendations.
                      rising costs of medical care
    Question. In testimony presented to Congress in February, 2009, the 
Assistant Director of the Congressional Budget Office asserted that 
``medical funding accounts for more than one-third of the growth 
projected for operations and support funding between 2009 and 2026.'' 
In April 2009, Secretary Gates told an audience at Maxwell Air Force 
Base that ``health care is eating the Department alive.'' In recent 
years, the Department has attempted to address the growth in overall 
health care costs through various fee increases on military retirees.
    What reforms in infrastructure, benefits, or benefit management, if 
any, do you think should be examined in order to control the costs of 
military health care?
    Answer. It is essential that the Department take steps to control 
the costs of military healthcare while ensuring it continues to provide 
for our military personnel, their families, and retirees. I understand 
the Department included proposals in the fiscal year 2012 and 2013 
President's budgets that would slow the growth of healthcare costs 
while preserving the quality and range of health care. These proposals 
include increasing enrollment fees and deductibles for retirees and 
increasing pharmacy co-pays. Not many of these proposals were accepted 
by Congress. If confirmed, I will review initiatives in this area and 
look for further opportunities as we must continue to look for savings 
in this area.
    Question. What is your assessment of the long-term impact of rising 
medical costs on future DOD plans?
    Answer. As I understand the situation, health care consumes nearly 
10 percent of the Department's budget and could grow considerably over 
the next decade, taking an ever larger bite out of our ability to 
invest in enhanced warfighting capability. However, I realize that the 
healthcare benefit is a key component of retention for our men and 
women in uniform so I will work closely with the military and civilian 
leadership in the Department to find reasonable and responsible ways to 
stem this growth without breaking faith with our servicemembers, their 
families, and retirees.
    Question. If confirmed, what actions would you initiate or 
recommend to mitigate the effect of such costs on the DOD top-line?
    Answer. I cannot make specific recommendations at this time. If 
confirmed, I am committed to continuing to review military health care. 
Any changes must keep the faith with our troops, be transparent, 
preserve the quality and range of health care, and protect wounded 
warriors, medically-retired, and the families of those who died on 
Active Duty. Given today's budget environment, we must continue to look 
for savings opportunities, and this should include military health 
care.
                    personnel and entitlement costs
    Question. In addition to health care costs, personnel and related 
entitlement spending continues to grow and is becoming an ever 
increasing portion of the DOD budget.
    What actions do you believe can and should be taken, if any, to 
control the rise in personnel costs and entitlement spending?
    Answer. I understand personnel and entitlement costs make up a 
significant portion of the Department's budget and have risen sharply 
over the past 10 years. The Department has proposed several initiatives 
in an attempt to slow the rate of growth while continuing to attract 
and retain the right number and quality of personnel. If confirmed, I 
am committed to exploring options to find savings and more efficient 
alternatives to help control the rise in personnel and entitlement 
costs while still fully supporting the All-Volunteer Force.
    Question. In your view, can the Department and the Services 
efficiently manage the use of bonuses and special pays to place high 
quality recruits in the right jobs without paying more than the 
Department needs to pay, or can afford to pay, for other elements of 
the force?
    Answer. I understand that targeted bonuses and special pays are 
very effective tools for achieving the Department's personnel strength 
and quality objectives and are generally much more cost-effective than 
across-the-board pay increases. Like any compensation program, these 
tools must be continually monitored to ensure they are used both 
efficiently and effectively and that the Department is receiving best 
value for its dollars.
            military compensation and retirement commission
    Question. The NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 establishes a commission to 
review all elements of the military compensation and retirement systems 
and to make recommendations to modernize those systems to ensure the 
long-term viability of the All-Volunteer Force, enable a high quality 
of life for military families, and to achieve fiscal sustainability for 
the compensation and retirement systems.
    Do you agree with the need for a comprehensive study of the 
military compensation and retirement systems?
    Answer. I believe it is appropriate to perform a comprehensive 
review of the military compensation and retirement systems to ensure we 
have the right mix of pay and benefits to support our members.
    Question. Do you support the goals of the Commission?
    Answer. Yes. I am committed to ensuring any proposed changes to the 
mix of pay and benefits keep faith with those who are serving today and 
with those who have served in the past.
             dependent care and flexible spending accounts
    Question. The 10th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation 
recommended providing dependent care and flexible spending benefits to 
Active Duty servicemembers. Providing these benefits would seem 
consistent with the initiatives of First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. 
Jill Biden on behalf of military families. It would appear that no new 
legislative authority is needed for the Department to provide these 
benefits to servicemembers and their families.
    If confirmed, would you extend these benefits to the Active Duty 
servicemembers and their families?
    Answer. Taking care of our servicemembers and their families is a 
top priority of DOD. If confirmed, I will examine the option of 
flexible spending accounts for military families to determine if they 
are an appropriate part of our extensive benefits package for 
servicemembers and their families in this time of fiscal austerity.
             suicide prevention and mental health resources
    Question. The numbers of suicides in each of the Services continues 
to concern the committee. The Army released a report in July 2010 that 
analyzed the causes of its growing suicide rate and examined disturbing 
trends in drug use, disciplinary offenses, and high risk behaviors. In 
addition studies conducted by the Army, of soldiers and marines in 
theater, showed declines in individual morale and increases in mental 
health strain, especially among those who have experienced multiple 
deployments.
    In your view, what role should DOD play in shaping policies to help 
prevent suicides both in garrison and in theater and to increase the 
resiliency of all servicemembers and their families, including members 
of the Reserve components?
    Answer. Suicides by military members are tragic--every suicide is 
one too many. It is a a complex problem that plagues our entire 
society--there are no easy answers or quick solutions. I think 
Secretary Panetta put it best when he said that suicide is perhaps the 
most frustrating challenge he has come across as Secretary of Defense. 
I believe that DOD must take a multi-faceted approach to preventing 
suicides that involves leadership responsibility, access to quality 
behavioral health care, efforts to improve mental fitness and 
resiliency, and increased research on causes and means of preventing 
suicide. If confirmed, I will push for enhancements to DOD's policies 
and programs in each of these areas.
    Question. What is your understanding of the action that the Office 
of the Secretary of Defense and the Army are taking in response to the 
July 2010 Army report, and the data in Chapter 3 in particular?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Department has taken multiple 
actions to address the rise of suicides since the release of the Army's 
July 2010 report as well as the report of the DOD Suicide Prevention 
Task Force in September 2010. In particular, in November 2011, the DOD 
established the Defense Suicide Prevention Office to serve as the 
oversight authority for the implementation, standardization, and 
evaluation of suicide and risk reduction programs and policies.
    Question. If confirmed, what actions will you take to ensure that 
sufficient mental health resources are available to servicemembers in 
theater, and to the servicemembers and their families upon return to 
home station?
    Answer. I am firmly committed to implementing the President's 
Executive Order on ``Improving Access to Mental Health Services for 
Veterans, Servicemembers, and Military Families.'' I look forward to 
reviewing the 12-month national suicide prevention campaign that DOD 
and VA are developing as part of the implementation of this Executive 
Order and will ensure that DOD does all it can to ensure that it is 
providing sufficient, high-quality behavioral health care to 
servicemembers and their families.
                        military quality of life
    Question. The committee is concerned about the sustainment of key 
quality of life programs for military families, such as family support, 
child care, education, employment support, health care, and morale, 
welfare and recreation services, especially as DOD faces budget 
challenges.
    How do you perceive the relationship between military recruitment 
and retention and quality-of-life improvements and your own top 
priorities for the Armed Forces?
    Answer. Quality-of-life programs that address family readiness 
needs must be available to families of our military members wherever 
they may be located. Changes in our basing, deployment patterns, and 
force structure, as we implement our new strategy and respond to the 
current fiscal environment, will pose some additional challenges in 
delivering these programs. If confirmed, I will closely monitor the 
impacts of such changes to ensure the needs of our military families 
continue to be met.
    Question. If confirmed, what further enhancements to military 
qualify of life would you consider a priority, and how do you envision 
working with the Services, combatant commanders, family advocacy 
groups, and Congress to achieve them?
    Answer. I recognize that the well-being of the force, as well as 
recruiting and retention efforts, are significantly impacted by quality 
of life programs. I look forward to working with Congress, family 
advocacy groups, the Services, and combatant commanders to ensure we 
have a comprehensive, accessible, and affordable suite of programs.
                      family readiness and support
    Question. Military members and their families in both the Active 
and Reserve components have made, and continue to make, tremendous 
sacrifices in support of operational deployments. Senior military 
leaders have warned of growing concerns among military families as a 
result of the stress of frequent deployments and the long separations 
that go with them.
    What do you consider to be the most important family readiness 
issues for servicemembers and their families?
    Answer. It is the Department's responsibility to help prepare 
military families to cope with the challenges inherent with military 
service. In order to build and sustain resilient military families, the 
Department must continuing to focus on programs that enhance their 
social, financial, educational, and psychological well-being.
    Question. If confirmed, how would you ensure that family readiness 
needs are addressed and adequately resourced?
    Answer. Sustaining family programs in the current fiscally 
constrained environment will be challenging, but it is of vital 
importance. If confirmed, I will seek to protect funding for family 
readiness programs to the greatest extent possible and will examine all 
such programs to ensure that they are operating efficiently so that 
available resources are going to their best and most effective uses.
    Question. How would you address these family readiness needs in 
light of global rebasing, deployments, and future reductions in end 
strength?
    Answer. Changes in our basing, deployment patterns, and force 
structure, as we implement our new strategy and respond to the current 
fiscal environment, will pose some additional challenges to maintaining 
family readiness. If confirmed, I will closely monitor the impacts of 
such changes to ensure the needs of our military families continue to 
be met.
    Question. If confirmed, how would you ensure support is provided to 
Reserve component families related to mobilization, deployment and 
family readiness, as well as to Active Duty families who do not reside 
near a military installation?
    Answer. I believe that DOD has a responsibility to ensure access to 
quality programs, information and resources to families, regardless of 
their location. Military OneSource is an excellent example of a 
resource that is not tied to location, but allows families to access 
information and referral by the internet or by phone with live 
consultants available 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week. Maintaining a 
strong network of community-based providers, and partnerships with 
State and local governments are also key in ensuring local resources 
are readily available to servicemembers and their families, 
particularly Reserve component families and Active component families 
who do not live near a military installation. If confirmed, I will 
evaluate these programs to ensure we are meeting the needs of these 
military families.
    Question. If confirmed, what additional steps will you take to 
enhance family support?
    Answer. I believe there are opportunities to improve the efficiency 
and accessibility of the resources and programs that DOD, other Federal 
agencies, State and local governments, and community organizations 
provide to support servicemembers and their families. If confirmed, I 
will explore these opportunities and how we can better coordinate 
efforts among the various entities providing family support.
                       detainee treatment policy
    Question. Do you support the policy set forth in the July 7, 2006, 
memorandum issued by the Deputy Secretary of Defense stating that all 
relevant DOD directives, regulations, policies, practices, and 
procedures must fully comply with Common Article 3 of the Geneva 
Conventions?
    Answer. Yes.
    Question. Do you support the standards for detainee treatment 
specified in the revised Army Field Manual on Interrogations, FM 2-
22.3, issued in September 2006, and in DOD Directive 2310.01E, the 
Department of Defense Detainee Program, dated September 5, 2006?
    Answer. Yes.
    Question. If confirmed, will you ensure that all DOD policies 
promulgated and plans implemented related to intelligence 
interrogations, detainee debriefings, and tactical questioning comply 
with the Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions and the Army Field 
Manual on Interrogations?
    Answer. Yes.
    Question. Do you share the view that standards for detainee 
treatment must be based on the principle of reciprocity, that is, that 
we must always keep in mind the risk that the manner in which we treat 
our own detainees may have a direct impact on the manner in which U.S. 
soldiers, sailors, airmen, or marines are treated, should they be 
captured in future conflicts?
    Answer. Yes. reciprocity is a critical component and underlying 
value of our detainee treatment policies. As a Vietnam veteran, I also 
view this principle of reciprocity as a way to protect our U.S. 
soldiers, sailors, airmen, or marines, should they be captured in 
future conflicts.
         coordination with the department of homeland security
    Question. After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, 
Congress established the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and DOD 
established the U.S. Northern Command and an Assistant Secretary of 
Defense for Homeland Defense and Americas' Security Affairs.
    What is your assessment of the current situation regarding 
cooperation and coordination between DOD and DHS on homeland security 
and civil support matters, and what will be your goals in this regard 
if you are confirmed?
    Answer. Recent disaster responses, including the Department's 
efforts in response to Hurricane Sandy, show that DOD and DHS have a 
strong relationship. This success is a result of active engagement the 
Department has at all levels with DHS and many other of the 
Department's domestic interagency partners. Elements of the Department 
work very closely on a daily basis with the Federal Emergency 
Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Coast 
Guard, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The Department and DHS 
have successfully exchanged liaison and coordination staff officers to 
cement this collaborative approach at the working level. While a Member 
of Congress I voted to establish the DHS and have been pleased to see 
its success. If confirmed, my goal would be to continue to bolster the 
strong relationship between the Departments of Defense and Homeland 
Security.
    Question. Do you believe the current mechanism for DOD to respond 
to the needs of domestic government agencies for DOD support in the 
event of a natural or manmade disaster is appropriate, or do you 
believe it needs to be modified?
    Answer. The mechanisms for the Department to respond to the needs 
of domestic agencies appear to be working effectively. It is my 
understanding that the Department acted on 60 requests for assistance 
from FEMA during the Hurricane Sandy response last year, including 
helping to restore power, providing millions of gallons of fuel for 
first responders and residents, and removing water from the Brooklyn 
Battery tunnel, the longest underwater tunnel in North America. I 
understand that the Department also responded to some 21 other requests 
for assistance from FEMA for a variety of other disasters in 2012, as 
well as providing assistance to other Federal agencies, including the 
U.S. Forest Service for wildland firefighting and the U.S. Secret 
Service for protection of the President during special events such as 
the recent Inauguration. If confirmed, I will work with the 
Department's partner agencies to ensure that the current mechanisms 
remain effective and, where opportunities arise, pursue improvements.
                          iraq lessons learned
    Question. Did you agree with the President's decision on the 
withdrawal of U.S. military forces from Iraq? If so, why? If not, why 
not?
    Answer. Yes. I supported the withdrawal of all U.S. forces from 
Iraq by December 2011 in accordance with the November 2008 U.S.-Iraq 
Security Agreement. It was the right decision. Our military men and 
women in uniform had completed their mission. We now have a strong 
relationship with a sovereign Iraq. Our drawdown has allowed us to 
advance our strategic partnership based on mutual interests and mutual 
respect.
    Question. In your view, what aspects, if any, of the departure/
drawdown of U.S. forces would you have modified?
    Answer. I would not have modified the withdrawal of all U.S. combat 
forces by December 2011. I believe that the deadline helped the Iraqi 
Security Forces step up and take responsibility for the security of 
their people. This has allowed us to deepen our partnership with a 
sovereign Iraq, based on mutual interests and mutual respect.
    Question. What do you believe are the major lessons learned from 
the Iraq invasion and the follow-on efforts to stabilize the country 
through 2011?
    Answer. I believe we must think very carefully before we commit our 
Armed Forces to battlefields abroad. Our forces deserve policies and 
planning worthy of the sacrifices they make in combat. Our Nation 
learned a number of lessons in Iraq--from the invasion, to the 
stabilization, to the withdrawal of our forces. These lessons include 
ensuring appropriate planning and preparation for a range of outcomes 
and events, setting clear and realistic strategic objectives, 
appreciating the limitations of military force and the necessity of 
engaging all levels of national power (political, economic, cultural, 
intelligence), recognizing the value and difficulty of building 
partnership capacity, enhancing interagency coordination, and improving 
our oversight of wartime spending and contracting. One of the most 
important lessons is that the U.S. Government must prepare for combat, 
post-combat, and securing the peace. The U.S. military must plan and 
train with civilian counterparts, be prepared to operate effectively in 
all phases of conflict, and improve cultural, linguistic, and 
partnering and advising skills within our force.
    Question. What is your understanding and assessment, if any, of the 
Department's adaptations or changes in policy, programs, force 
structure, or operational concepts based upon these lessons learned?
    Answer. I understand the Department has taken a number of steps to 
institutionalize the lessons from Iraq across policy, doctrine, 
organization, and training. The Department is committed to maintaining 
a focus on cultural and linguistic capabilities as well as the new 
operational approaches in counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, and 
security force assistance. If confirmed, I will work to ensure that the 
Department continues to evaluate and implement lessons learned.
    Question. If confirmed, what additional changes, if any, would you 
propose making to policy, programs, force structure, or operating 
concepts based on the lessons of combat and stability operations in 
Iraq?
    Answer. I do not feel I know enough at this time to provide not 
have additional recommendations. If confirmed, I will study and 
evaluate the Department's efforts to retain and refine the lessons 
learned, expertise, and specialized capabilities that have been 
developed over the past 10 years of counterinsurgency and stability 
operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Question. You called for an international mediator under the 
auspices of the U.N. Security Council to engage Iraq's political, 
religious, ethnic, and tribal leaders. Would you advocate that same 
course of action for Afghanistan?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will closely monitor the Afghan-led 
reconciliation process and make recommendations on any changes I think 
would be helpful. However, within the administration, the Afghanistan 
reconciliation process is led by the Department of State. They are in a 
better position to advise on the need for a U.N. Security Council role.
    Question. Based on the lessons learned during the departure of 
military forces from Iraq, if confirmed, how would you shape U.S. 
enduring presence in Afghanistan in the post-2014 environment?
    Answer. The U.S. presence post-2014 is an issue being discussed 
between the President and the Government of Afghanistan. If confirmed, 
I would work to ensure that the United States retains criminal and 
civil jurisdiction over U.S. forces in the Bilateral Security Agreement 
now under negotiation; if it does not, I will not support a continued 
U.S. military presence.
               stability and counterinsurgency operations
    Question. The January 2012 DOD Strategic Guidance called for U.S. 
forces to be ready to conduct limited counterinsurgency and other 
stability operations if required, and to retain and continue to refine 
the lessons learned, expertise, and specialized capabilities that have 
been gained over the past 10 years of operations in Iraq and 
Afghanistan. At the same time, the Strategic Guidance states that, 
``U.S. forces will no longer be sized to conduct large-scale, prolonged 
stability operations.''
    In your view, how should strategic guidance for DOD manage risk and 
articulate the types of missions or operations U.S. forces will or will 
not be expected to execute or accomplish?
    Answer. The Department's strategic guidance documents should set 
clear priorities that enable senior Departmental leadership to 
determine appropriate trade-offs in military missions and force 
structure. Senior leadership deliberation on these trade-offs should be 
informed by a comprehensive, strategic understanding of risk to our 
defense and national security objectives. As strategy is implemented, 
the Department should continue to test it to determine areas of risk 
and develop mitigation options. If confirmed, I will aim to have any 
risk the Department bears be both manageable and acceptable; although 
budget uncertainty will make this a difficult task.
    Question. In your view, what are the appropriate roles and 
responsibilities, if any, between DOD and other departments and 
agencies of the Federal Government in the planning and conduct of 
stability operations?
    Answer. Coordinated and integrated interagency efforts are 
essential to the conduct of successful stability operations. The United 
States should emphasize non-military means and military-to-military 
cooperation to address instability and reduce the demand for 
significant U.S. force commitments to stability operations. In general, 
the Department should be in a support role to other U.S. Government 
departments and agencies in the planning and execution of most 
stability operations. However, if directed, the Department will lead 
stability operations activities to establish security, to restore 
essential services, to repair and protect critical infrastructure, and 
to deliver humanitarian assistance. Once acceptable levels of security 
and public order have been established, the Department should seek to 
transition lead responsibility to other U.S. Government agencies, 
foreign governments and security forces, or international governmental 
organizations.
    Question. In developing the capabilities necessary for stability 
operations, what adjustments, if any, should be made to prepare U.S. 
Armed Forces to conduct stability operations without detracting from 
its ability to perform combat missions?
    Answer. As our campaigns over the last 12 years have demonstrated, 
it is no longer an either/or choice between stability operations and 
combat. After almost 2 decades of hard-earned lessons in Afghanistan, 
Iraq, the Balkans, and elsewhere, I understand the Services have made 
great strides in their combined abilities to conduct stability 
operations. If confirmed, I will seek to maintain the stability 
operations expertise the Department has gained, and to ensure that the 
Services have the mechanisms necessary to expand their capacities, 
should our military forces be called upon to conduct comprehensive and 
sustained stability operations.
    Question. Do you believe that the U.S. Government needs to 
establish new procedures to manage stability operations? If so, why?
    Answer. Collaborative and coordinated planning with interagency and 
international partners is fundamental to the successful management and 
the effectiveness of U.S. Government stabilization and reconstruction 
activities. We must have a strong combined ability to conduct effective 
interagency planning. If confirmed, I will review the Department's 
procedures to identify potential improvements in the current processes 
and procedures used to manage stability operations across the U.S. 
Government and, as necessary and possible, expand the Department's 
support to other departments and agencies in their stability operations 
planning and execution.
    Question. With the drawdown of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, 
what is your view on the future disposition of foreign and security 
force funding authorities including 1206 (Global Train and Equip), the 
Global Security Contingency Fund (GSCF), and other security force 
assistance authorities?
    Answer. Today's security challenges cannot and should not be 
addressed by the United States alone. We need partnerships that combine 
our unique capabilities with the unique strengths of our allies and 
partners. Future challenges will likely emphasize the importance of our 
collaboration with capable partners. I understand that in order to meet 
our counterterrorism challenges, the Department shares these two 
authorities with the State Department to train and equip foreign 
security forces in a more rapid fashion than traditional Foreign 
Military Financing. Section 1206 is an important part of the 
Department's ``toolbox'' for responding to urgent and emerging 
counterterrorism challenges and stability operations, and that the GSCF 
is in its initial pilot phase. If confirmed, I will ensure that the 
Department effectively and efficiently leverages authorities that 
enable our security force assistance efforts. These efforts are 
important to the Department's ability to build the capacity of foreign 
partners to help them develop effective and legitimate security 
institutions that can provide for their countries' internal security, 
and contribute to regional and multilateral responses to threats and 
instability.
    Question. In your view, is there a roll for DOD in improving the 
operational capabilities of the African Standby Brigades?
    Answer. The Department can help improve the capabilities of the 
individual countries contributing forces to the African Standby 
Brigades. Direct training can make a qualitative difference in the 
capabilities of partner countries and increase the effectiveness of the 
regional organizations that mandate such operations. In terms of 
helping the Standby Brigades once they are established, I understand 
that there are Presidential Determinations authorizing work with some 
regional organizations. In the cases where the Department is able to 
engage, I understand that habitual training and exercises can help 
strengthen the Brigades' operational capabilities.
                       security situation in iraq
    Question. What is your assessment of the current security situation 
in Iraq?
    Answer. The overall security situation is stable, yet challenges 
remain. It is critical for Iraq to resolve its internal boundary 
disputes and political differences without the use or threat of force. 
I am concerned about the intent of al Qaeda in Iraq to exploit 
political and sectarian differences to breed instability. The Iraqi 
Security Forces have proven themselves capable of countering this 
threat to date and I believe that our continuing partnership with Iraq 
should aim to help Iraq against this terrorist threat.
    Question. What are the main challenges to stability and security in 
Iraq over the coming months?
    Answer. The main challenges to internal stability and security in 
Iraq are al Qaeda in Iraq, slow political progress, and sectarian-
motivated groups who would use violence to advance their cause. 
Moreover, the unresolved status of territories claimed by the Kurdistan 
Regional Government has the potential to create fissures that can be 
exploited by extremist groups, and could lead to an escalation of 
tension between Kurdish and central government forces. While plenty of 
stumbling blocks exist, it is important that the Iraqi political 
parties continue to look to the political process to resolve their 
differences. Continuing to encourage dialogue and respect for the 
constitutional process will be crucial to ensuring long-term stability. 
The United States must also closely watch the impact that events 
external to Iraq, such as the deteriorating situation in Syria, have on 
Iraqi stability and security.
                    u.s.-iraq strategic relationship
    Question. The withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq at the end of 
2011 has been described as the beginning of a new chapter in the 
strategic relationship between the United States and Iraq. The U.S.-
Iraq Strategic Framework Agreement sets out a foundation for a 
normalized U.S.-Iraqi relationship in areas of mutual economic, 
diplomatic, cultural and security interests. Secretary of Defense 
Panetta and the Iraqi Minister of Defense recently signed a Memorandum 
of Understanding (MOU) for Defense Cooperation between the Ministry of 
Defense of the Republic of Iraq and the DOD of the United States.
    How do you envision the U.S.-Iraq strategic relationship developing 
in the coming years and what are your priorities for that relationship?
    Answer. The United States should seek a normal, productive 
relationship and a strategic partnership with a sovereign Iraq--
analogous to the partnerships we have with other countries in the 
region and around the world. If confirmed, I will continue to 
strengthen our military-to-military relationship with Iraq, and further 
its reintegration into the region.
    Question. What do you see as the greatest challenges for that 
relationship over the coming years?
    Answer. Iraq faces several tough challenges as the Nation's new 
government matures and works through internal differences, and it will 
be important to continue to engage Iraq during a time of change. We 
have moved from occupiers to partners, and that can be a hard 
transition. But recent turmoil in the broader Middle East highlights 
the importance of active U.S. engagement and maintaining strategic 
partnerships with regional partners based on mutual interests and 
mutual respect. We must maintain focus on Iraq in order to advance 
broader U.S. objectives of peace and security in the region.
    Question. What is your understanding and assessment of the recently 
concluded MOU? In your view, does this agreement on defense cooperation 
promote U.S. interests with respect to Iraq and the region?
    Answer. My understanding of the MOU is that it represents mutual 
understandings regarding future expansion of defense cooperation. In a 
time of great uncertainty in the region, Iraq will play an increasingly 
important role in ensuring stability and it is critical that we 
continue to work together to ensure stability and peace in the region.
                 office of security cooperation in iraq
    Question. In the NDAAs for Fiscal Years 2012 and 2013, Congress 
authorized the Secretary of Defense to support the transition in Iraq 
by providing funds for the activities and operations of the Office of 
Security Cooperation in Iraq (OSC-I). In the report accompanying the 
NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013, the conferees expressed their expectation 
that the administration will accelerate the transition of the OSC-I to 
a normalized status comparable to Offices of Security Cooperation in 
other countries in the region, and that funding for OSC-I activities 
and operations will be transitioned out of DOD to other sources, as is 
the case for offices of security cooperation in other countries.
    Do you support the transition of the OSC-I to a normalized office 
of security cooperation comparable to those in other countries in the 
region?
    Answer. Yes. The OSC-I, under Chief of Mission authority, is the 
foundation for our long-term security partnership with Iraq. If 
confirmed, I will continue Secretary Panetta's work to normalize the 
OSC-I, in coordination with the Department of State, which has lead for 
the U.S. Mission in Iraq.
    Question. If confirmed, will you ensure that the transition of the 
OSC-I to a normalized status, including funding from sources other than 
the DOD, is completed in a deliberate manner?
    Answer. Yes. If confirmed, I will work with the Department of 
State, which has lead for the U.S. Mission in Iraq, to normalize the 
OSC-I and transition to traditional security assistance and security 
cooperation funding sources.
    Question. What timeframe would you use as a target to transition 
OSC-1 to a normalized status?
    Answer. I am unable to comment on the specific timing as I have not 
reviewed the detailed plans and it is a decision to be made with the 
Department of State, which has lead for the U.S. Mission in Iraq. If 
confirmed, I will review the planning for OSC-I normalization and work 
closely with the Department of State.
                          afghanistan strategy
    Question. Do you support the current strategy for Afghanistan? In 
your view, is that the right strategy?
    Answer. Yes. I support the strategy that the President has set 
forth and that we are now implementing, and I believe it is the right 
strategy. I believe that any strategy should be reviewed and adapted 
over time, and, if confirmed, will give my best advice to the President 
and consult with Congress on this critical issue.
    Question. If confirmed, are there changes you would recommend to 
the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan?
    Answer. I believe that the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan is sound. I 
also believe that, over time, the administration should continue to 
assess the strategy. If confirmed, I will consult with Congress, and 
with our allies and partners in this regard.
    Question. What is your assessment of the progress of the campaign 
in Afghanistan?
    Answer. I believe that our campaign in Afghanistan has made 
significant progress. Our Coalition and Afghan partners blunted the 
insurgents' summer offensive for the second consecutive year. The 
Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) are moving into security lead 
throughout the country. They are pushing violence out of most populated 
areas, and the United States and our coalition partners agreed in 
Chicago to support the long-term stability and security of Afghanistan. 
Exceeding initial expectations, Afghan forces began leading the 
majority of operations in July 2012 and now lead approximately 80 
percent of operations. In February, in conjunction with the fourth 
tranche of transition, the ANSF is expected to have the lead in 
securing 87 percent of the Afghan population. Overall violence was down 
7 percent in 2012. At the same time, I understand that significant 
challenges remain, including insider threats and completing the 
transition to Afghanistan taking on full responsibility for its 
security at the end of 2014.
                   security transition in afghanistan
    Question. President Obama and Afghan President Karzai recently 
announced that the transition to an Afghan lead for security throughout 
Afghanistan will occur this spring, several months ahead of schedule. 
As part of the ongoing transition, coalition forces are shifting 
increasingly to an advise-and-assist mission but will continue to 
support Afghan security forces until the International Security 
Assistance Force (ISAF) mission concludes by no later than the end of 
2014.
    Do you support the announced transition of the security lead to 
Afghan security forces throughout Afghanistan by this spring?
    Answer. Yes. As this transition occurs, I understand that the ISAF 
will shift into an advisor support role.
    Question. Do you support the shift in the mission of coalition 
forces to an increasingly advise-and-assist role in support of Afghan 
security forces?
    Answer. Yes. This mission shift to an increasingly support role is 
consistent with what Afghans want and what was agreed at the 2010 
Lisbon Summit--an Afghanistan able to provide for its own security, 
with the assistance of the U.S. and other nations. The U.S. and our 
coalition and Afghan partners reaffirmed this goal at the 2012 Chicago 
North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Summit. For transition to be 
successful, it makes good sense for the ANSF to assume lead security 
responsibility this year, enabled by continued support and mentoring 
from ISAF to prepare them for full security responsibility by the end 
of 2014.
    Question. Do you agree that it is important for the success of the 
mission in Afghanistan to have Afghan security forces, rather than 
coalition forces, taking the lead for security and conducting 
unilateral operations to the maximum extent?
    Answer. Yes. Training and developing the ANSF into a force that can 
sustainably assume full security responsibility by the end of 2014 is 
critical to meeting this objective.
    Question. What is your assessment of the capacity and performance 
of the Afghan security forces in assuming the lead for security in 
areas designated for transition, including in contested areas?
    Answer. I understand that the ANSF have exceeded initial 
expectations. Afghan forces began leading the majority of operations in 
July 2012 and now lead approximately 80 percent of operations, 
including increasingly complex, multi-day operations. Violence in 
transition Tranches 1, 2, and 3, where the ANSF are now in the lead, 
was down 9 percent, 6 percent, and 14 percent respectively in 2012 
compared to 2011. Some of these initial areas of transition include 
contested areas, such as Lashkar Gah and Helmand, where the ANSF have 
done well. However, the last two transition Tranches contain many 
contested areas, so significant challenges remain and ISAF support will 
be critical throughout 2013-2014.
    Question. In your opinion, are there any conditions on the ground 
in Afghanistan at the end of 2014 that would preclude a responsible 
transition of mission from combat to support for U.S. forces? Under 
what conditions, if any, would you recommend against making such a 
transition at the end of 2014?
    Answer. Currently, I believe that transition is on track for the 
Afghans to assume full security responsibility by the end of 2014. At 
this time, I do not foresee any realistic conditions that would 
preclude this transition from being completed responsibly by the end of 
2014. If confirmed, I will monitor the conditions closely and will 
continue to assess progress, in consultation with commanders on the 
ground and the Joint Chiefs; and, if necessary and warranted by 
changing conditions, I will adjust the Department's recommendations.
                draw down of u.s. forces in afghanistan
    Question. In June 2011, President Obama announced his decision to 
draw down the 33,000 U.S. surge force in Afghanistan so that by the 
summer of 2012 U.S. forces will be at a level of 68,000. The President 
recently reaffirmed his pledge to continue to bring U.S. forces home 
from Afghanistan at a steady pace. He also stated he would announce the 
next phase of the U.S. drawdown based on the recommendations of the 
ISAF Commander and other commanders on the ground in Afghanistan.
    How would you assess the decision to draw down the 33,000 U.S. 
surge force from Afghanistan by the end of summer 2012?
    Answer. In my view, the decision to draw down the U.S. surge by the 
end of the summer has been proven by conditions on the ground. Although 
challenges remain and progress in Afghanistan has been uneven in many 
areas, overall security has improved and Afghans are increasingly in 
the lead.
    Question. What in your view should be the pace of reductions in 
U.S. forces during each of 2013 and 2014?
    Answer. I do not have access to the relevant analysis to make a 
detailed assessment, but understand that President Obama will consider 
options provided by our senior military and civilian leaders. I support 
the President's direction, articulated in the West Point speech, for 
``steady'' reductions. If confirmed, ensuring an effective transition 
in Afghanistan will be one of my top priorities.
    Question. What in your view should be the size and missions of any 
residual U.S. force that may remain in Afghanistan after the end of 
2014?
    Answer. The key missions of any post-2014 military presence would 
focus: training, advising, and assisting ANSF; and targeted 
counterterrorism missions against al Qaeda and its affiliates, while 
also protecting U.S. forces and citizens. The size of the force will 
flow from missions assigned.
    Question. In your view, is there a minimum number of troops that 
will be required to both accomplish the assigned mission and provide 
security for those executing that mission?
    Answer. I have not yet reviewed the detailed mission planning and 
analysis to form a view regarding the appropriate number of U.S., 
coalition, and Afghan troops necessary to fulfill key missions 
including force protection. I do believe that sufficient forces should 
be provided to do the job assigned to them, while protecting 
themselves.
               status-of-forces agreement for afghanistan
    Question. As called for in the Enduring Strategic Partnership 
Agreement signed in May, the United States and Afghanistan are holding 
talks on a Bilateral Security Agreement, which will provide essential 
protections for any limited U.S. military presence in Afghanistan after 
2014.
    Do you agree that it is essential that any status of forces 
agreement for U.S. military forces in Afghanistan after 2014 provide 
immunity for U.S. troops from prosecution in Afghan courts?
    Answer. Yes. I agree with the position made clear by the President 
during his joint press conference with President Karzai on January 11, 
2013, that ``it would not be possible for us to have any kind of U.S. 
troop presence [in Afghanistan] post-2014 without assurances that our 
men and women who are operating there are [not] in some way subject to 
the jurisdiction of another country.''
                  afghanistan national security forces
    Question. What is your assessment of the progress in developing a 
professional and effective Afghanistan National Security Forces (ANSF)?
    Answer. Based on the information available to me, I believe that 
the ANSF has and continues to make significant progress over the past 
few years. I understand that today the ANSF field three out of every 
four people in uniform defending Afghanistan, and that Afghans conduct 
the majority of operations backed up by the ISAF.
    Question. What do you see as the main challenges to building the 
capacity of the ANSF and, if confirmed, what recommendations, if any, 
would you make for addressing those challenges?
    Answer. A first challenge is to continue to improve the quality, 
readiness and performance of the 352,000 personnel in the ANSF. I 
understand that problems remain in leadership, retention, corruption, 
and the long personnel training needed to operate certain enablers such 
as logistics and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR). 
A second challenge is for the ANSF to develop a greater capacity for 
maintaining equipment and integrating it into operations needed for 
logistics support, mobility, ISR, and operational planning. I am aware 
that the Department has an aggressive effort to close these enabler 
gaps. Third, and most broadly, the ANSF must continue building its 
self-confidence through operational success in taking the lead 
responsibility for securing transitioning areas and protecting the 
Afghan people. If confirmed, I will make it a priority to continue, and 
where necessary, adjust efforts to build ANSF capacity and capability.
    Question. Do you support plans for building and sustaining the ANSF 
at 352,000 personnel?
    Answer. Yes. I understand that our commanders consider the current 
ANSF force of 352,000 personnel necessary to complete the transition to 
Afghan lead security responsibility by the end of 2014, and to secure 
the country during the transition of power following the Afghan 
Presidential election in 2014. If confirmed, I will continue to review 
the numbers and capabilities of the ANSF to ensure that we are 
supporting a force structure that is sufficient to meet our goals, and 
is fiscally sustainable over the long term.
    Question. Do you agree that any reductions in the ANSF from this 
352,000 level should be based on security conditions in Afghanistan at 
the time those reductions would be expected to occur?
    Answer. I agree that changes in ANSF force levels should take 
account of expected security conditions. At the same time, for planning 
and budgeting purposes, it is necessary to make projections about the 
future security environment and plans about future force levels. If 
confirmed, I will review these issues and propose adjustments over 
time, as appropriate.
                             insider threat
    Question. In 2012 there was a significant increase in the number of 
so-called ``green-on-blue'' incidents in which individuals in Afghan 
uniform attacked U.S. or coalition soldiers. The rising number of 
insider attacks has led U.S. and Afghan military leaders to order a 
number of precautions against such insider threats, including expanding 
Afghan counterintelligence efforts to identify possible Taliban 
infiltrators, increasing cultural sensitivity training, and expanding 
the ``Guardian Angel'' program to protect against the insider threat in 
meetings between coalition and Afghan forces.
    What is your assessment of the insider threat and its impact on the 
military campaign in Afghanistan?
    Answer. Insider attacks have the potential to damage the strategic 
trust necessary for our campaign to succeed. It is vital that we work 
with our Afghan and international partners to take every step possible 
to stop these attacks. I understand that U.S. and Afghan efforts have 
reduced attacks and are helping to reduce risks to coalition personnel. 
If confirmed, I will continue to pay close attention to countering this 
threat.
    Question. What is your assessment of the measures that have been 
taken by ISAF and Afghan leaders to address the insider threat?
    Answer. My understanding is that the measures put in place to date 
have helped to mitigate the threat from insider attacks, with the 
number of attacks now dropping from a peak in August 2012. Raised 
awareness of the threat and the implementation of robust force 
protection measures help protect our personnel, but the work by the 
ANSF to identify threats and prevent attacks through improved 
intelligence gathering and vetting of personnel remains critical. As we 
move into the ``fighting season'' we need to ensure these steps 
continue to be implemented fully and that ISAF continues to take the 
necessary steps to prevent these attacks. If confirmed, I will make 
this a key priority.
    Question. Are there additional steps that you would recommend to 
address this threat, if confirmed?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will continue current efforts--and ask for 
a constant review of additional measures to further reduce the risk 
posed by insider threats.
    Question. What is your assessment of the impact of these green-on-
blue attacks on the level of trust between coalition and Afghan forces?
    Answer. It is understandable that insider attacks have negatively 
impacted trust in some areas. However, after more than 11 years of 
fighting shoulder to shoulder and shared sacrifice, I believe that, in 
most areas, the relationship between the ANSF and the Coalition remains 
strong, particularly out in the field, where soldiers face a common 
enemy every day.
    Question. In light of the spike in insider attacks, do you see a 
need to reconsider our plans for embedding small Security Force 
Assistance Teams of U.S. military personnel with Afghan military units 
as part of the transition to an Afghan security lead?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will place a priority on mitigating insider 
attacks and will ensure that our commanders continually assess the 
impact of these attacks on the campaign, and consider whether changes 
to the Security Force Assistance Team model should be made, including 
any temporary adjustments as needed.
                             reconciliation
    Question. In your view, what should be the role of the United 
States in any reconciliation negotiations with the Afghan Taliban and 
other insurgent groups?
    Answer. I agree with President Obama that Afghan-led reconciliation 
is the surest way to end violence and ensure lasting stability in 
Afghanistan and the region. Most counterinsurgencies end in some form 
of negotiation. The U.S. role should be to facilitate credible 
negotiations between the Afghan Government and the Taliban, and ensure 
that three necessary outcomes are met: that the Taliban and armed 
groups end violence, break ties with al Qaeda, and accept Afghanistan's 
constitution, including protections for all Afghan men and women.
    Question. What additional steps, if any, should the United States 
be taking to help advance the reconciliation process?
    Answer. The United States should continue to coordinate efforts 
closely with the Afghan Government.
    Question. In your view, what should be the role of Afghanistan's 
neighbors, in particular Pakistan, in the reconciliation process?
    Answer. Afghanistan's neighbors should support an Afghan-led 
process. Each will benefit from improved stability in Afghanistan or 
potentially suffer from continued violence. Pakistan and other 
neighbors should work forthrightly with Afghanistan to mitigate any 
suspicions or misunderstandings.
                   special operations in afghanistan
    Question. Special Operations Forces depend on general purpose 
forces for many enabling capabilities, including ISR; logistics; and 
medical evacuation. Admiral McRaven, Commander of U.S. Special 
Operations Command, has said ``I have no doubt that special operations 
will be the last to leave Afghanistan'' and has predicted that the 
requirement for special operations forces may increase as general 
purpose forces continue to be drawn down.
    If confirmed, how would you ensure adequate enabling capabilities 
for Special Operations Forces as general purpose forces continue to 
draw down in Afghanistan?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will seek to ensure that all U.S. forces in 
Afghanistan--including both Special Operations Forces and general 
purpose forces--are supported by sufficient enablers. In addition to 
providing clear guidance to commanders, I will seek the military advice 
of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and ensure that the views of all 
relevant combatant commanders are taken into account.
    Question. Last April, the United States and Afghanistan signed an 
MOU on the ``Afghanization'' of direct action counterterrorism missions 
in Afghanistan reflecting the shared intention of having Afghan 
security forces in the lead in the conduct of such operations with U.S. 
forces in a support role.
    Why is it important for Afghan Special Operations Forces to be in 
the lead on night raids?
    Answer. Having Afghans in the lead for ``night operations'' makes 
good sense for three reasons. First, this approach helps ensure that 
cultural and language differences do not result in misunderstandings 
that could escalate a situation. Second, having Afghans in the lead 
allows for improved real-time intelligence collection. Third, the 
Afghan Special Operations Forces are capable of fulfilling this mission 
and their doing so is a key part of the transition.
    Question. General Allen and others have consistently praised the 
Village Stability Operations (VSO) and Afghan Local Police (ALP) 
programs--both U.S. Special Operations missions as critical elements of 
the counterinsurgency strategy in Afghanistan. Some Afghans have called 
for the removal of U.S. Special Operators from these operations.
    What are your views on the value of these programs and do you 
believe they should be part of the long-term strategy in Afghanistan 
(i.e. post-2014)?
    Answer. I understand that VSO and the ALP have contributed to the 
decline in Taliban control in many strategic areas throughout 
Afghanistan. If I am confirmed, I will make a priority to assess the 
potential future value of these programs.
               u.s. strategic relationship with pakistan
    Question. What would you consider to be areas of shared strategic 
interest between the United States and Pakistan?
    Answer. I believe the United States and Pakistan share common 
interests in disrupting, dismantling, and defeating al Qaeda, and in 
long-term regional stability, including a durable political settlement 
in Afghanistan and the safety and security of the Indian Ocean.
    Question. In what areas do you see U.S. and Pakistani strategic 
interests diverging?
    Answer. The United States and Pakistan often diverge over 
Pakistan's approach to the militant and terrorist networks that operate 
in Pakistan's territory and do not overtly threaten the Pakistani 
state. However, in my view, these networks threaten Pakistani 
stability, endanger the prospects for a settlement in Afghanistan, and 
undermine regional stability--so that in fact, while the relationship 
is challenging, I believe our long-term strategic interests are in 
alignment.
    Question. If confirmed, what changes, if any, would you recommend 
for U.S. relations with Pakistan, particularly in terms of military-to-
military relations?
    Answer. U.S.-Pakistan military-to-military ties have been marked by 
periodic ups and downs. In my view, the military-military relationship 
should be underlined by a realistic, pragmatic approach to enhancing 
those areas of cooperation that are dictated by our common interests 
and to ensuring accountability for actions that detract from these 
interests. If confirmed, I will make accomplishing that goal a 
priority.
                      u.s. assistance to pakistan
    Question. Since 2001, the United States has provided significant 
military assistance to Pakistan. In addition, the United States has 
provided significant funds to reimburse Pakistan for the costs 
associated with military operations conducted by Pakistan along the 
Afghanistan-Pakistan border and other support provided in connection 
with Operation Enduring Freedom.
    In your view, how effective has the assistance and other support 
that the United States has provided to Pakistan been in promoting U.S. 
interests?
    Answer. As the President has said, more terrorists have been killed 
in Pakistan than anywhere else since September 11--and that would not 
be possible without Pakistani cooperation. Security assistance for 
Pakistan has helped Pakistan press this campaign against the militant 
and terrorist networks that threaten us all. If confirmed, I will work 
to ensure that our security assistance and other support to Pakistan 
both serves U.S. interests and is cost effective.
    Question. Do you support conditioning U.S. assistance and other 
support to Pakistan on Pakistan's continued cooperation in areas of 
mutual security interest?
    Answer. U.S. assistance to Pakistan should not be unconditional. At 
the same time, any conditions should be carefully examined to ensure 
they advance U.S. strategic interests.
                     al qaeda and associated forces
    Question. What is your assessment of the threat posed by al Qaeda 
and its associated forces to the U.S. Homeland, U.S. interests 
overseas, and Western interests more broadly?
    Answer. I assess that the threat posed by al Qaeda to the U.S. 
Homeland has been significantly diminished over the past 4 years. At 
the same time, al Qaeda's remaining leadership in Pakistan and al Qaeda 
in the Arabian Peninsula remains of serious concern. Additionally, the 
Arab Spring has created new opportunities for al Qaeda affiliates in 
Syria and North Africa.
    Question. In light of the recent events in Benghazi and Algeria, do 
you share the assessment that al Qaeda is on the brink of strategic 
defeat?
    Answer. Our sustained military, intelligence, and diplomatic 
efforts over the last 10 years have brought us closer to the strategic 
defeat of core al Qaeda. There can be no doubt, however, that al Qaeda 
and associated forces remain potent, dangerous, and adaptable foes--as 
evidenced by its despicable actions in Benghazi and more recently in 
Algeria. If confirmed, I will continue to focus on defeating al Qaeda 
and its associated forces around the world.
                              arab spring
    Question. The Arab Spring has changed--and will likely continue to 
change--the political dynamics in the Middle East and North Africa. 
These changes require the United States to adjust our military-to-
military and defense civilian relations in this region. Some observers 
argue that the United States should reduce significantly our military-
to-military contact in countries as a result of the ongoing changes and 
others advocate more robust and stepped-up contact with our partners in 
this region.
    In your view, what should be the posture of the U.S. Government on 
military-to-military and defense civilian relations in the region?
    Answer. DOD's military-to-military and defense civilian relations 
with our partners in the Middle East and North Africa have played a 
critical role in advancing U.S. strategic interests, which include: 
securing and protecting Israel, preventing Iran from acquiring a 
nuclear weapon, defeating extremists, countering terrorist 
organizations, ensuring the free flow of commerce, and supporting 
operations in Afghanistan. Engagement with key partners' defense 
ministries and militaries, building partner capacity to meet common 
challenges, having a forward presence to enable operations and deter 
threats, and if and when necessary to conduct future contingencies, all 
require considerable effort by both DOD and the Department of State. 
During this time of change and uncertainty in the region, the 
Department should sustain military-to-military and defense civilian 
relations, while continuing to evaluate and recalibrate the nature and 
substance of our relationships to ensure they are consistent with U.S. 
values and advance U.S. vital national interests.
                                 syria
    Question. The civil war in Syria continues and President Assad's 
commitment to continuing his regime's ongoing operations appear 
unwavering--despite broad international condemnation. To date, the 
United States has limited its support to opposition forces to non-
lethal assistance to forces on the ground, as well as technical 
assistance to elements of the opposition working to build a cohesive 
political entity.
    In your view, what is the proper role on the United States in this 
conflict?
    Answer. I support the administration's position that Syrian 
President Bashar al-Asad has lost all legitimacy and must step aside to 
enable a political solution that ends the bloodshed, and meets the 
aspirations of the Syrian people. As President Obama has clearly 
stated, Asad must go. I also support the administration's approach to 
the ongoing crisis in Syria--working closely with allies, partners and 
multilateral institutions to achieve this goal through diplomatic and 
economic pressure on the Asad regime.
    I agree with the administration's continued support of the Geneva 
Action Group's framework for a political solution, which was endorsed 
by the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, the Arab 
League, and the U.N. General Assembly. If confirmed, I will continue to 
support Joint U.N.-Arab League Special Representative Brahimi's efforts 
to build international support for the Geneva framework and urge all 
parties in Syria to take steps toward its implementation, to help 
expedite an end to the suffering of the Syrian people.
    Question. In your view, should the United States provide other 
kinds of support to opposition groups on the ground in Syria, including 
the provision of lethal support?
    Answer. The U.S. Government should continue providing non-lethal 
assistance to the unarmed opposition, as well as humanitarian support 
to Syrians in need, both inside Syria and in neighboring countries. The 
United States should also continue to support the opposition in the 
diplomatic arena. This includes helping the newly established Syrian 
Opposition Council with its efforts to end the conflict and improve the 
future of the Syrian people. I also believe that, like ongoing 
diplomatic efforts, U.S. assistance efforts should continue to be 
coordinated with our allies, partners, and relevant regional groups to 
have the biggest impact possible.
    I do not believe that providing lethal support to the armed 
opposition at this time will alleviate the horrible situation we see in 
Syria. The Syrian people are in great need during this difficult 
period, and the United States is helping to address those basic needs 
by providing medical assistance, humanitarian assistance, and political 
support on the international stage. We must continually explore 
additional ways to provide resources and help influence the right 
outcome.
    Question. If confirmed, will you review Defense Department planning 
for options to ensure the security of chemical weapons in Syria, and 
recommend any additional planning, if needed?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department continues 
planning for a variety of contingencies in order to provide the 
President with options. This includes relevant planning for Syria and 
specifically, the security and elimination of chemical weapons in 
Syria. If confirmed, I will review these plans and, if necessary, I 
will direct additional planning on this and any other potential 
contingencies.
    Question. In your view, what should be NATO's role with respect to 
Syria (i.e. should NATO consider a military intervention, the creation 
of a no-fly zone, or other military operations to protect civilians and 
support opposition forces)?
    Answer. The United States is working with our allies to achieve a 
peaceful and orderly political transition in Syria and to end the 
bloodshed as quickly as possible. Our NATO allies are closely 
monitoring the situation in Syria, especially as the conflict touches 
on NATO's border in Turkey, and like us, are extremely concerned about 
the deteriorating humanitarian conditions on the ground. NATO's 
ultimate task is the protection and defense of NATO members. To that 
end, I support NATO's decision to augment Turkey's air and missile 
defense capabilities in order to defend the population and territory of 
Turkey and contribute to the de-escalation of the crisis along the 
alliance's border. This includes the recent deployment of NATO Patriot 
batteries to Turkey from the United States, Germany, and The 
Netherlands. I understand the administration has also been working with 
our international partners, including NATO allies, to ensure that the 
appropriate humanitarian assistance is reaching those Syrians in need, 
both inside Syria and in neighboring countries (Lebanon, Turkey, 
Jordan, and Iraq).
                                 libya
    Question. On March 19, 2011, the multilateral military operation, 
named Operation Odyssey Dawn, was launched in Libya to enforce United 
Nations Security Council Resolution 1973. Following the initial 
operations against Libyan integrated air defense systems, this 
operation continued under NATO Command as Operation Unified Protector.
    What are your views on the limited U.S. military mission in Libya--
Operation Odyssey Dawn and Operation Unified Protector?
    Answer. I believe the U.S. and NATO operations in Libya were a 
success. Operation Odyssey Dawn stopped Colonel Qadhafi's army from 
advancing on Benghazi, saved thousands of lives, and established the 
conditions for a no-fly-zone. Operation Unified Protector built on 
these accomplishments and created the time and space needed for the 
opposition to oppose, and ultimately overthrow, Qadhafi. Both 
operations had limited and clear objectives for the unique capabilities 
the U.S. military could provide, avoided U.S. boots-on-the-ground, 
integrated allies and partners, minimized collateral damage and 
civilian casualties to a historically unprecedented extent, and enjoyed 
the legitimacy of U.N. Security Council authorization. This was all 
achieved at a fraction of the cost of recent interventions in the 
Balkans, Iraq, or Afghanistan.
           u.s. marine corps support to the state department
    Question. The Accountability Review Board for Benghazi recently 
completed its report examining the facts and circumstances surrounding 
the September 11-12, 2012 attack against the U.S. temporary mission 
facility in Benghazi. Among its findings and conclusions, its report 
supported the ``State Department's initiative to request additional 
marines and expand the Marine Security Guard (MSG) Program--as well as 
corresponding requirements for staffing and funding. The Board also 
recommends that the State Department and DOD identify additional 
flexible MSG structures and request further resources for the 
Department and DOD to provide more capabilities and capacities at 
higher risk posts.'' In the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013, Congress 
authorized up to 1,000 additional marines in the MSG program to provide 
the additional end strength and resources necessary to support enhanced 
Marine Corps security at U.S. embassies, consulates, and other 
diplomatic facilities.
    In your view, should the Marine Corps diplomatic security mission 
be expanded to include new roles beyond the protection of classified 
information and equipment, and if so, how many additional marines and 
what rank structure would be needed?
    Answer. I am aware that the Departments of Defense and State are 
currently thoroughly examining the challenges and threats posed by 
global unrest to our overseas operations and are developing options to 
address these challenges. These options include consideration of 
expanding Marine Security Guard detachments, as well as adjustments to 
their roles and responsibilities. I have not reviewed the details of 
the options and, therefore, am unable to comment on the specific 
arrangements, numbers of personnel, or rank structure at this time. 
However, if confirmed, I will place personal emphasis on this issue and 
work closely with the Secretary of State and Congress to ensure we are 
doing all we can to help protect our diplomats and diplomatic 
facilities overseas.
    Question. In your view, should the current arrangements between the 
Department of State and U.S. Marine Corps be modified?
    Answer. I cannot recommend any changes at this time. If confirmed, 
I will review the on-going work and recommendations that are being 
developed by the Departments of Defense and State that is examining the 
roles, responsibilities, and arrangements of the U.S. Marine Security 
Guards and the Department of State.
          strategic communications and information operations
    Question. Over the past decade, DOD has funded an increasing number 
of military information support operations (formerly known as 
psychological operations) and influence programs. The GAO reports that 
DOD has ``spent hundreds of millions of dollars each year'' to support 
its information operations outreach activities. Many of these programs 
are in support of operations in Afghanistan, but Military Information 
Support Teams (MIST) from U.S. Special Operations Command also deploy 
to U.S. embassies in countries of particular interest around the globe 
to bolster the efforts of the Department of State and the U.S. Agency 
for International Development. Further, the geographic combatant 
commands are increasingly moving into this operational space.
    What are your views on DOD's military information support 
operations and influence programs?
    Answer. I believe DOD must be able to influence and inform foreign 
audiences in environments susceptible to the messages of U.S. 
adversaries. MISTs are trained in developing culturally appropriate 
messages to counter hostile information and propaganda, as well as 
assisting with building the capacity of partner nations to conduct 
these activities themselves. I understand that DOD influence 
activities, including those conducted by MISTs, are coordinated closely 
with the embassies in the areas where they operate, both inside and 
outside of areas of conflict, and at times can support common efforts 
of other agencies. I understand the Department has taken significant 
steps to address congressional concerns related to policy oversight, 
budgeting, and effectiveness. If confirmed, I intend to continue to be 
responsive to Congress on this matter, as well as to continue the 
Department's efforts to coordinate information activities across the 
interagency.
    Question. In 2005, al Qaeda's Ayman al-Zawahiri declared that ``We 
are in a battle, and more than half of it is taking place in the 
battlefield of the media.'' In 2010, a non-partisan study highlighted 
the lack of a U.S. strategy to counter radical ideologies that foment 
violence (e.g. Islamism or Salafist-Jihadism).
    In your view, what is the appropriate role of DOD, if any, in 
developing and implementing a strategy to counter radical ideologies, 
and how does that role complement or conflict with the efforts of the 
Intelligence Community and the State Department?
    Answer. Countering violent extremist ideology is a whole-of-
government endeavor. I believe the Defense Department's focus should be 
on using its assets to meet military objectives and providing support 
to other U.S. Government agencies as requested. I understand the 
Department's activities in this area are closely coordinated with the 
Intelligence Community and the State Department.
    Question. Defense Secretary Gates launched the Minerva Program in 
2009 to develop deeper social, cultural and behavioral expertise for 
policy and strategy purposes.
    Do you support this program and its goals?
    Answer. I understand both Secretary Gates and Secretary Panetta 
supported the MINERVA initiative, which provides the Department with a 
means to focus research on complex social, cultural and political 
dynamics related to our strategic interests around the world. If 
confirmed, I would seek to learn more about the program and assess its 
continued value in supporting policy and strategy development.
                                somalia
    Question. Somalia is a training and operations hub for al Shabab 
and other violent extremists; pirates operating in the Indian Ocean and 
Arabian Peninsula; illicit traffickers of weapons, humans, and drugs; 
and remnants of the al Qaeda East Africa cell that was responsible for 
the destruction of our embassies in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi in August 
1998.
    What is your assessment of the threat posed by al Shabab to the 
U.S. Homeland and U.S. and Western interests in the East African 
region?
    Answer. My understanding is that successful operations by the 
African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) have reduced Al-Shabaab's 
freedom of movement in south and central Somalia, but al Shabaab 
remains a threat to the U.S. Homeland and to U.S. and Western interests 
in the Horn of Africa. Al Shabaab leaders have claimed affiliation with 
al Qaeda since 2007 and formally merged with the group in February 
2012. Al Shabaab has demonstrated a desire and capability to conduct 
terrorist acts throughout the Horn of Africa, and it presents a threat 
to the homeland through links into Somali diaspora communities in the 
United States and Europe. Al Shabaab continues to repress the Somali 
people and remains the greatest threat to the new Somali Government. As 
the new Somali Government stands up, I believe that the United States 
must remain focused on the risks posed by al Shabaab.
    Question. Given the role of the various U.S. Government Departments 
and Agencies in the Horn of Africa, what changes, if any, would you 
make to DOD's current role in the Horn of Africa?
    Answer. With the establishment of the new government in Somalia and 
U.S. recognition of that government earlier this month, the Department 
will continue to play a role in Somalia's security sector development 
in order to help secure the gains made by AMISOM. Most of the U.S. 
Government's traditional security cooperation tools have been 
restricted from use in Somalia for some time, but I understand that the 
United States will explore possible changes in the coming year, as the 
United States moves to normalize relations with Mogadishu. If 
confirmed, I will work to ensure that the Department's approach to 
Somalia is developed as part of a coordinated U.S. national security 
policy toward the Horn of Africa, and to determine how the Department 
can and should best support our foreign policy in this region.
    Question. In your view, what role, if any, should the United States 
play in the building of a Somali national army?
    Answer. The United States can play a guiding and mentoring role in 
the development of Somalia's security sector. It is in the U.S. 
interest to ensure that Somalia's new government has a competent and 
professional military to provide security to its citizens and play a 
constructive role in the region.
                   al qaeda in the arabian peninsula
    Question. A number of senior U.S. officials have indicated the most 
significant threat to the U.S. Homeland currently emanates from Yemen.
    What is your assessment of the threat posed by al Qaeda in the 
Arabian Peninsula to the United States?
    Answer. I am very concerned about the threat that al Qaeda in the 
Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) poses to the Homeland. AQAP has attempted at 
least three attacks on the United States since December 2009, and in my 
view fully intends to attack again. AQAP has shown some very 
sophisticated and innovative techniques, such as the development of 
concealed explosive devices and printer cartridge bombs. AQAP is also 
attempting to recruit and radicalize would-be terrorists in the West 
through its extensive media outreach.
    Question. What is your assessment of the current U.S. strategy to 
counter al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, specifically in Yemen?
    Answer. I support the administration's whole-of-government strategy 
to: support the political transition, marshal international economic 
and humanitarian assistance, and build Yemen's counter-terrorism 
capabilities through training and assistance. The U.S. strategy to 
disrupt, dismantle, and defeat AQAP is a collaborative U.S.-Yemeni 
effort. By closely monitoring and acting on current threat streams 
while building key Yemeni capabilities, I believe the United States has 
shown the ability to counter near-term threats.
    We have made a number of important gains against AQAP over the past 
couple of years. I understand that the Department continues to 
collaborate extensively with Yemeni forces on operational matters, 
which have helped remove several key AQAP operatives from the 
battlefield. Efforts to counter AQAP's narrative have helped to 
delegitimize the group and discourage its efforts to recruit new 
operatives. The U.S. Government's work on countering threat financing 
has made it more difficult for AQAP to receive funds and to support 
other parts of al Qaeda. U.S. efforts--many of them executed by the 
Department--to train, advise, and equip Yemeni forces are driving AQAP 
from territory it previously held and are enabling precise operations 
to capture and kill AQAP leaders.
                              north africa
    Question. In December 2012, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta 
stated that ``Al Qaeda has long sought to operate in areas beyond the 
reach of effective security and governance, [and] we know that al 
Qaeda, its affiliates and adherents are looking to establish a foothold 
in other countries in the Middle East, and north and west Africa, 
including al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, and the Boko Haram group in 
Nigeria.''
    What is your assessment of the threat posed by al Qaeda and its 
associated forces in North Africa? Do they pose a threat to the United 
States homeland and/or U.S. interests abroad?
    Answer. Al Qaeda in the lands of the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) poses 
an increasing threat to U.S. interests. My understanding is that at 
this time, there is no credible evidence that AQIM is a direct threat 
to the U.S. Homeland. However, as seen in the recent hostage situation 
in Algeria, AQIM and its associates do threaten U.S. persons and 
interests abroad, as well as our European allies.
    Question. In January 2013, the French Armed Forces began conducting 
operations against violent extremist groups in Mali.
    In your view, what should be the role, if any, of the United States 
in supporting the French operation?
    Answer. The United States shares the French goal of denying AQIM 
and other terrorists a safe haven in the region. I agree with the 
administration's decision to support the French mission without 
deploying U.S. combat forces on the ground. My understanding is that 
this support includes assisting the movement of French and African 
forces, providing intelligence and planning support, and assisting in 
the training and preparation of African forces.
    Question. In your view, what should be the role of the United 
States in working with United Nation's Security Council authorized 
forces from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in 
Mali?
    Answer. The African-led International Support Mission in Mali 
(AFISMA), approved by a Chapter VII U.N. Security Council mandate to 
restore Malian sovereignty and counter violent extremists, is very 
important for U.S. interests and for regional stability. I support the 
U.S. position to expedite the training, equipping and deployment of 
West African troops as part of AFISMA to ensure a successful, African-
led mission.
   collaboration between the defense department and the intelligence 
                               community
    Question. Since September 11, 2001, collaboration--both analytical 
and operational--between the Defense Department and the Intelligence 
Community has grown increasingly close. On one hand, seamless 
collaboration is a vital component of effective and rapid responses to 
non-traditional threats, and bringing together the strengths of the 
full spectrum of defense and intelligence missions creates 
opportunities for solutions to complex problems. On the other hand, 
such collaboration--without effective management and oversight--risks 
blurring the missions of agencies and individuals that have cultivated 
distinct strengths or creating redundant lines of effort.
    What are your views regarding the appropriate scope of 
collaboration between DOD and the Intelligence Community?
    Answer. Collaboration between DOD and the Intelligence Community 
(IC) is an essential element for supporting our national security 
objectives. Eight of the 17 IC components are embedded in the 
Department which constitutes a substantial portion of the Nation's 
intelligence capabilities and resources. It is my understanding that 
the Department depends on capabilities provided by the IC to support 
weapons systems acquisition and to enable military operations, while 
the IC depends on capabilities provided by the Department to support a 
wide range of critical intelligence-related and special activities. 
Collaboration has also been central to the ability to dismantle and 
eventually defeat al Qaeda and to counter the proliferation of weapons 
of mass destruction (WMD). In 2007, the Secretary of Defense and the 
Director of National Intelligence (DNI) established the position of the 
Director of Defense Intelligence (DDI) within the Office of the 
Director of National Intelligence, and dual-hatted the Under Secretary 
of Defense for Intelligence (USD(I)) as the DDI. The DNI and the USD(I) 
have since pursued National Intelligence Program-Military Intelligence 
Program budget integration leading to more effectiveness and 
efficiencies from vital intelligence resources.
    Question. In your view, are there aspects of the current 
relationship between the Department and the Intelligence Community that 
should be re-examined or modified?
    Answer. I do not know the issue well enough to make recommendations 
at the time. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department 
consistently assesses its processes and procedures for evaluating how 
it interacts with the IC and look for opportunities to build on the 
existing relationship.
                             nato alliance
    Question. The NATO alliance continues to be central to our 
coalition operations in Afghanistan and elsewhere, even as many NATO 
members have significantly reduced their national defense budgets in 
response to economic and fiscal pressures.
    Do you agree that U.S. participation in the NATO Alliance 
contributes to advancing U.S. security interests?
    Answer. Yes. the transatlantic relationship is of critical 
importance to U.S. security interests. NATO has been the cornerstone of 
European security and an integral part of U.S. foreign policy for more 
than 60 years, and NATO has continued to be critically important to 
U.S. security interests in recent years. In Afghanistan, there have 
been nearly 40,000 allied and partner forces alongside our own. In 
Libya, NATO allies came together with Arab and other partners to 
prevent a humanitarian catastrophe, and to support the Libyan people. 
Over years in the Balkans, NATO has been vital to stability and has 
moved us closer to the goal of a Europe whole, free, and at peace. NATO 
must remain the central Alliance in U.S. global strategy and has proven 
an effective partner.
    Question. What are the greatest opportunities and challenges that 
you foresee for NATO in meeting its strategic objectives over the next 
5 years?
    Answer. In my view, the top NATO-related challenge is the mounting 
fiscal pressures facing all allies and the resulting reduction in 
alliance military capabilities as allies cut spending. However, these 
fiscal difficulties present an opportunity to transform NATO into an 
Alliance that is more efficient, with a new way of doing business that 
emphasizes innovation, flexibility, and enhanced cooperation and 
interoperability with allies and partners. The Alliance must also 
continue to adapt to meet the new threats of the 21st century: cyber 
attacks, terrorism, proliferation of WMD, and regional conflicts.
    Question. In light of the reductions in national defense spending 
by some NATO members, are you concerned that the alliance will lack 
critical military capabilities? If so, what steps, if any, would you 
recommend be taken to address potential shortfalls in alliance 
capabilities?
    Answer. Yes. I am concerned that the Alliance is in danger of 
losing critical military capabilities if something does not change. The 
past decade-plus of fighting in Afghanistan has left the alliance with 
worn equipment and depleted defense budgets. The Alliance should commit 
to halting defense cuts, complete the capability projects it has 
already initiated, and reinvest the funds it will save from the end of 
combat operations in Afghanistan into sustaining and building 
prioritized capabilities. If confirmed, I will work to ensure NATO's 
commitments to critical capabilities.
    Question. The concept of defense cooperation between NATO members 
was emphasized at the NATO summit in Chicago in May 2012.
    What areas or projects do you recommend that NATO nations cooperate 
in to improve NATO alliance capabilities?
    Answer. I support the roadmap for NATO that was agreed to by 
Presidents and Prime Ministers from across the alliance at the Chicago 
Summit last May. It describes and prioritizes NATO's required 
capabilities, encourages greater pooling of resources, and focuses on 
improving education, training, and technology to preserve the 
interoperability resulting from years of joint operations in 
Afghanistan.
    Question. Under what conditions, if any, would you envision further 
enlargement of NATO in the coming years?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would work closely with my colleagues in 
the administration and in close consultation with Congress and our 
allies to determine which countries and within what timeframe NATO 
would undertake further enlargement. Each NATO aspirant should be 
judged on its individual merits and progress in implementing political, 
economic, and military reforms.
    Question. In your view, is there a continuing requirement for U.S. 
nuclear weapons to be deployed in NATO countries?
    Answer. I agree with the 2010 Nuclear Posture Review that the 
presence of U.S. nuclear weapons, along with NATO's unique nuclear 
sharing arrangements, contribute to alliance cohesion and provide 
reassurance to allies and partners who feel exposed to regional 
threats. Any changes should only be taken after a thorough review 
within, and a decision by, the alliance. I also support NATO's 
Deterrence and Defense Posture Review that the President and fellow 
Heads of State and Government agreed to at the May 2012 Chicago NATO 
Summit. The review committed the alliance to ensuring that NATO's 
nuclear deterrent remains safe, secure, and effective. The review also 
stated that the alliance is prepared to consider further reductions in 
non-strategic nuclear weapons assigned to the alliance, in the context 
of reciprocal steps by Russia. If confirmed, I will continue to consult 
with our allies on any such negotiations.
    Question. What is your understanding of the relationship between 
Israel and Turkey as it relates to NATO? Are you concerned about the 
breakdown in the security cooperation relationship between Turkey and 
Israel and do you have any ideas as to how to mend it?
    Answer. I remain concerned about the deterioration of the 
relationship between Turkey and Israel, both of which are important 
partners for the United States and are critical to stability in their 
region. These relationships are broader than this dispute. Turkey is a 
critical NATO Ally, and we will continue to exercise, plan, and work 
with Turkey in that context. Israel is a key security partner of the 
United States. If confirmed, I would work to ensure that the United 
States continues, in diplomatic channels and in defense contacts, to 
encourage both Turkey and Israel to take the steps necessary to resolve 
their dispute and work together to address common regional challenges.
                                 kosovo
    Question. Approximately 760 U.S. troops remain in the Balkans as 
part of the Kosovo Force (KFOR) that first deployed to Kosovo in 1999 
and today is comprised of over 5,500 personnel from 30 countries. 
Spikes in violence in 2011 required the deployment of the NATO 
Operational Reserve Force battalion of approximately 600 soldiers to 
bolster KFOR and maintain a secure environment. Progress is required in 
both the military and political realms before further troop reductions 
can be made.
    What major lines of effort do you think are required to further 
reduce or eliminate U.S. and NATO presence in Kosovo?
    Answer. I recognize that the United States has a long-established 
commitment, together with our NATO allies, to a responsible, 
conditions-based drawdown of forces in Kosovo. I understand DOD 
continues to work with allies and NATO military authorities in 
monitoring and assessing conditions and pursuing carefully developed 
plans for the eventual drawdown. Ultimately, a political solution is 
needed to normalize relations between Kosovo and Serbia and thereby 
establish lasting security in Kosovo and the region. If confirmed, I 
will support this effort, both through Department-led engagements, and 
also by supporting our interagency and international partners to 
achieve this goal. I understand that a key part of the KFOR military 
plan, executed by NATO, is to enable a transition of security 
responsibilities to Kosovo. The United States plays a critical role in 
this effort. If confirmed, I will ensure that DOD provides support for 
this goal consistent with decisions among the United States and our 
allies.
    Question. In your view, is the European Union (EU) playing a 
significant enough role in Kosovo?
    Answer. The EU is playing a critical role by facilitating high-
level dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia. This dialogue is broadly 
supported by the United States and our allies as an opportunity to 
normalize relations between the two countries. The EU Rule of Law 
Mission (EULEX) plays an important role in Kosovo, working to 
strengthen legal institutions there. The United States will continue 
its support for a robust role by EULEX to fulfill its mandate.
                       special operations forces
    Question. The previous two Quadrennial Defense Reviews (QDR) have 
mandated significant growth in our special operations forces and 
enablers that directly support their operations.
    What is your assessment of the QDR mandate regarding the mix of 
responsibilities assigned to general purpose and Special Operations 
Forces, particularly as it relates to security force assistance and 
building partner military capabilities?
    Answer. I agree with the premise that adversaries will continue to 
seek alternative methods to counter U.S. influence and interests, and 
that for the foreseeable future the most likely contingencies the 
United States will face will involve irregular threats. Therefore, I 
fully support the 2010 QDR's strategic shift toward expanding general 
purpose forces' capabilities and capacity for these contingencies. The 
overall flexibility of our Armed Forces has been greatly improved by 
investing in key enablers within our conventional force such as: 
strengthening and expanding capabilities for security force assistance; 
increasing the availability of rotary-wing assets; expanding manned and 
unmanned aircraft systems for ISR; improving counter-improvised 
explosive device capabilities; and enhancing linguistic, cultural, 
counterinsurgency, and stability operations competency and capacity.
    Question. Do you believe that our general purpose forces need to 
become more like Special Operations Forces in mission areas that are 
critical to countering violent extremists?
    Answer. Countering violent extremism requires employing all of the 
capabilities of the Department--mixed and matched appropriately--
depending on the mission requirements. The experience of the last 10 
years is clear that general purpose units and special forces both 
contribute to countering violent extremists.
    Question. Are there certain mission areas that should be reserved 
for Special Operations Forces only?
    Answer. Special Operations Forces (SOF) are a uniquely specialized 
component of our U.S. Armed Forces that are trained, organized, and 
equipped to conduct counterterrorism, unconventional warfare, direct 
action, special reconnaissance, foreign internal defense, and counter-
proliferation of WMD, and other designated operation, often in areas 
under enemy control or in politically sensitive environments. In such 
operations and environments, SOF provide unique and essential 
capabilities.
    Question. Do you believe that we should further increase the number 
of special operations personnel? If so, why, and by how much?
    Answer. I understand U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) is on 
track to meet the growth mandated by the last two QDRs. If confirmed, I 
would work with Commander, SOCOM, to better understand the command's 
missions, pressures, and growth plans.
    Question. Special Operations Forces rely heavily on Overseas 
Contingency Operations (OCO) funds.
    With the drawdowns in Iraq and Afghanistan, what OCO funding for 
special operations needs to be moved into the base budget to preserve 
enduring capabilities in your opinion?
    Answer. I believe we must continue to provide SOCOM with base 
budget resources sufficient to preserve long-term readiness of a global 
Special Operations Force. I understand that in the fiscal year 2013 
budget the Department moved roughly $1 billion from OCO to base funding 
and the intent is to continue this transition, although the current 
fiscal and strategic environment make that challenging.
    Question. In your view, can the size of Special Operations Forces 
be increased, while also maintaining the rigorous recruiting and 
training standards for special operators?
    Answer. I understand and agree with the concept that Special 
Operations Forces (SOF) cannot be mass produced, and I fully support 
SOCOM's efforts to maintain the quality of SOF operators and support 
personnel during this current era of SOF growth. Experience has shown 
that SOF manpower growth of 3 to 5 percent annually can be sustained 
and will not dilute the force or outpace the required training and 
support structure. This is the pace SOCOM has sustained to great effect 
over the past several years and is on track to sustain this year.
    Question. In recent years, Special Operations Forces have taken on 
an expanded role in a number of areas important to countering violent 
extremist organizations, including those related to information and 
military intelligence operations. Some have advocated significant 
changes to SOCOM's title 10 missions to make them better reflect the 
activities Special Operations Forces are carrying out around the world.
    Question. What current missions, if any, do you believe can and 
should be divested by SOCOM, and why?
    Answer. At this time, I do not advocate significant changes to 
SOCOM's title 10 missions. If confirmed, I would work with Commander, 
SOCOM, to better understand the command's missions, operations, and 
pressures and if I see that changes are needed I will offer proposals.
    Question. Are there any additional missions that you believe SOCOM 
should assume, and, if so, what are they and why do you advocate adding 
them?
    Answer. I do not currently foresee any additional missions that 
SOCOM should assume. If confirmed, I would work with Commander, SOCOM, 
to review any additional missions that may be proposed.
    Question. What can be done to ensure that indirect special 
operations missions with medium- and long-term impact, such as foreign 
internal defense, receive as much emphasis as direct action, and that 
they receive appropriate funding?
    Answer. The activities of Special Operations Forces are quite 
varied, from high-risk strikes and counterterrorist raids conducted in 
minutes, to training and advising foreign counterparts conducted over 
months and years. Both require highly skilled operators, trained, 
organized, and equipped for the task. I believe that each of these 
activities is a highly valued capability for the U.S. Government that 
should be maintained and, if confirmed, I will ensure that the 
Department is adequately prepared for both.
                      unified command plan changes
    Question. It has been reported that Admiral McRaven, Commander of 
SOCOM, is seeking changes to the Unified Command Plan (UCP) and other 
authorities that he believes would allow SOCOM to better support the 
requirements of the Theater Special Operations Commands (TSOCs). 
Reportedly, such changes would give the Commander of SOCOM combatant 
command authority over the TSOCs--including responsibilities for 
resourcing--and provide for more rapid deployment of special operations 
forces to and between geographic combatant commands without the 
requirement for approval by the Secretary of Defense in every case. 
Operational control of deployed Special Operations Forces would 
reportedly remain with the respective geographic combatant commander. 
Some have expressed concern that such changes could raise problems 
related to civilian control of the military, infringe upon the 
traditional authorities of the geographic combatant commanders, and 
make it more difficult for Ambassadors and geographic combatant 
commanders to know what military personnel are coming into their areas 
of responsibility and what they are doing while they are there.
    Please provide your assessment of whether such UCP changes are 
appropriate and can be made without conflicting with civilian control 
of the military, infringing upon authorities provided to the geographic 
combatant commanders, or raising concerns with the State Department.
    Answer. It is my understanding that DOD is considering several 
initiatives to enhance the organization, training, equipping, and 
employment of Special Operations Forces to meet future global security 
challenges, including potential changes to the UCP and other guidance 
that establish command responsibilities and relationships. If 
confirmed, I look forward to seeing the recommendations from the Joint 
Chiefs of Staff and senior civilian leadership and will ensure these 
proposed changes preserve civilian control of the military principles, 
establish clear and appropriate command authorities, and support strong 
interagency relationships.
                          combating terrorism
    Question. What is your assessment of the threat posed by al Qaeda 
and associated forces to the U.S. Homeland, U.S. interests overseas, 
and western interests more broadly? Which affiliates and associated 
forces are of most concern?
    Answer. I assess that the threat posed by al Qaeda to the U.S. 
Homeland has been significantly diminished over the past 4 years. At 
the same time, al Qaeda's remaining leadership in Pakistan and al Qaeda 
in the Arabian Peninsula remain of greatest concern. Additionally, the 
Arab Spring has created new opportunities for al Qaeda affiliates in 
Syria and North Africa.
    What is your understanding of the Department's role in the U.S. 
strategy to combat terrorism?
    Answer. My understanding is that the U.S. Government is engaged in 
a multi-departmental, multi-national effort, and that key activities 
that the Department undertakes to support this strategy include: 
training, advising, and assisting partner security forces; supporting 
intelligence collection on al Qaeda; conducting information operations 
against al Qaeda; and, when appropriate, capturing or killing al Qaeda 
operatives. I understand that the Department also works to help enable 
our intelligence and law enforcement partners, both in the United 
States and overseas, in their efforts to counter this threat.
    Question. Are there steps the Department should take to better 
coordinate its efforts to combat terrorism with those of other Federal 
departments and agencies?
    Answer. Based on my current knowledge, it appears that the 
Department is properly coordinating its counterterrorism efforts with 
the rest of the U.S. Government. I understand that the U.S. military, 
Intelligence Community, and law enforcement agencies regularly 
collaborate on operations, and that departments and agencies constantly 
share intelligence, with little of the ``stovepiping'' that we saw 
before September 11. I will look at this closely if confirmed.
              intelligence support for indirect activities
    Question. Some observers contend that the national intelligence 
agencies focus their assistance to the Defense Department on special 
operators engaged in direct action operations. As a consequence, it is 
alleged, general purpose forces and Special Operations Forces engaged 
in indirect activities, including foreign internal defense and 
population protection, receive less intelligence support.
    Do you believe this is true? If so, and if confirmed, how would you 
ensure that general purpose forces and special operations forces 
engaged in indirect activities receive adequate intelligence support?
    Answer. It is my understanding that the Intelligence Community and 
DOD continue to expand intelligence support for a full range of 
military operations--direct and indirect--not only in Afghanistan, but 
across multiple areas of responsibility. The Department has invested in 
and employed innovative ISR capabilities increasing its intelligence 
and operations support to interagency and foreign partners in their 
efforts against emerging threats. DOD and the Intelligence Community 
have assisted our partners in Afghanistan, East Africa, the Arabian 
Peninsula, Colombia, and the Phillipines. I think that U.S. military 
operations around the world over the past few years have demonstrated 
that our general purpose forces are the beneficiaries of consistent, 
timely support from across the Intelligence Community. If confirmed, I 
will work to ensure that intelligence capabilities are properly aligned 
across the force for all missions.
                        section 1208 operations
    Question. Section 1208 of the Ronald Reagan NDAA for Fiscal Year 
2005 (Public Law 108-375), as amended by subsequent bills, authorizes 
the provision of support (including training, funding, and equipment) 
to regular forces, irregular forces, and individuals supporting or 
facilitating military operations by U.S. Special Operations Forces to 
combat terrorism.
    What is your assessment of this authority?
    Answer. I understand that the section 1208 authority has been a 
very effective tool for U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) conducting 
counterterrorism operations to build effective security partners. 
Combatant commanders strongly support section 1208.
                         lord's resistance army
    Question. The President notified Congress in October 2011 of 
Operation Observant Compass (OOC), an operation to support the efforts 
of Ugandan and other regional militaries to remove Joseph Kony and 
other senior leaders of the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) from the 
battlefield in Central Africa, and of his decision to send 
approximately 100 U.S. Special Operations Forces personnel to Central 
Africa to help regional partners achieve these goals. Despite pressure 
by the Ugandan People's Defense Forces and efforts by U.S. Special 
Operations personnel to support them, elements of the LRA--including 
Joseph Kony--continue to operate and commit atrocities against civilian 
populations in the Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the 
Congo, and South Sudan. Congress recently passed and the President 
signed the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013, which reiterated that the ongoing 
efforts to remove or apprehend Joseph Kony and his top commanders from 
the battlefield and end the atrocities perpetuated by his LRA should 
continue as appropriate to achieve the goals of the operation.
    Do you support OOC?
    Answer. Yes. My understanding is that Department support to 
regional counter-LRA efforts helps to advance regional security 
cooperation and security sector reform more broadly. If confirmed, I 
would seek to continue the U.S. commitment to deepen our security 
partnerships with African countries and regional organizations by 
expanding efforts to build African military capabilities through low-
cost, small-footprint operations. At the same time, I would work with 
the Department of State and other U.S. agencies and departments to seek 
to strengthen the capacity of civilian bodies and institutions to 
improve the continent's ability to provide security and respond to 
emerging conflicts. I would also regularly assess and review Department 
contributions to this mission to ensure the deployment of U.S. 
personnel is not open-ended.
    Question. What is your understanding of the objectives of OOC?
    Answer. U.S. Special Operations Forces under OOC seek to enhance 
the capacity of local forces to end the threat posed by the LRA. It is 
my understanding that U.S. military advisors are working with these 
forces to strengthen information-sharing and synchronization, enhance 
their operational planning, and increase overall effectiveness. While 
OOC is important in the effort to counter the LRA threat, there is not 
a purely military solution to this problem. If confirmed, I would 
support the current U.S. policy of pursuing a comprehensive, multi-
faceted strategy to help the governments and people of this region in 
their efforts to end the threat posed by the LRA and to address the 
impacts of the LRA's atrocities. The U.S. strategy to counter the LRA 
outlines four pillars for continuing support: increasing the protection 
of civilians; apprehending or removing Joseph Kony and senior 
commanders from the battlefield; promoting the defection, disarmament, 
demobilization, and reintegration of remaining LRA fighters; and 
increasing humanitarian access and providing continued relief to 
affected communities.
                       mass atrocities prevention
    Question. President Obama identified the prevention of mass 
atrocities and genocide as a core U.S. national security interest, as 
well as a core moral interest, in August 2011 under Presidential Study 
Directive 10. What are your views on the role the United States plays 
in the prevention of mass atrocities and genocide?
    Answer. As President Obama noted in his speech at the Holocaust 
Museum last April, preventing and responding to atrocities is a 
critical mission and a core national security interest of the United 
States. As the President has made clear, we must look at a wide range 
of tools before military intervention. I support this view: we should 
make every effort to prevent crises from escalating, through every 
policy lever at our disposal, including diplomacy, assistance, and 
financial measures. I understand that the Atrocities Prevention Board 
has strengthened our efforts by developing more tools with which to 
work; I support these vital efforts
    Question. What are your views on the adequacy of the Department's 
tools and doctrine for contributing to this role?
    Answer. I understand that the Department has played an active role 
in the work of the Atrocities Prevention Board, working closely with 
other agencies to develop a range of tools that enhance the USG's 
ability to prevent and respond to atrocities. I also understand that 
DOD has strengthened its own capabilities, including by developing 
formal doctrine on mass atrocity response operations, for the first 
time, and incorporating atrocity prevention and response into policy 
and plans. If confirmed, I would continue these efforts.
             u.s. force posture in the asia-pacific region
    Question. The Defense Department's January 2012 strategic guidance, 
``Sustaining U.S. Global Leadership: Priorities for the 21st Century'', 
states that ``while the U.S. military will continue to contribute to 
security globally, we will of necessity rebalance toward the Asia-
Pacific region.'' Likewise, the 2010 report of the QDR states that the 
United States needs to ``sustain and strengthen our Asia-Pacific 
alliances and partnerships to advance mutual security interests and 
ensure sustainable peace and security in the region,'' and that, to 
accomplish this, DOD ``will augment and adapt our forward presence'' in 
the Asia-Pacific region.
    Do you feel DOD has adequate resources to implement the new January 
2012 strategic guidance?
    Answer. Congress passed and the President signed into law the BCA 
of 2011. The President insisted that the resulting defense cuts be 
driven by strategy and U.S. defense needs in the coming decade. I 
understand that the fiscal year 2013 DOD budget was shaped by the 
strategic guidance and reflects key mission and capability priorities 
emerging from the strategic review. If confirmed, I would continue to 
refine the focus of the Department's spending in future budget cycles 
and keep it in line with the President's strategic guidance. believe 
that the Department is facing hard but manageable cuts. The strategy is 
executable with the resource levels currently detailed in the BCA, but 
the potentially severe cuts stemming from sequestration would seriously 
threaten the Department's ability to implement the strategic guidance.
    Question. What do you see as the U.S. security priorities in the 
Asia-Pacific region?
    Answer. The maintenance of peace, stability, the free flow of 
commerce, and of U.S. influence in this dynamic region will depend in 
part on an underlying balance of military capability and presence. I 
believe that as a Pacific nation, the United States should, with its 
network of allies and partners, maintain an enduring defense presence 
in the Asia-Pacific region as a tangible demonstration of U.S. 
commitment to Asia's continued security and economic development.
    Question. What does the ``rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific 
region'' mean to you in terms of force structure, capabilities, and 
funding?
    Answer. The rebalance is broader than just military policies and 
programs; it is about harnessing every element of our national power to 
sustain a regional order rooted in economic openness, peaceful 
resolution to disputes, and democratic governance and political 
freedom, In terms of our force structure the rebalance places a renewed 
emphasis on air and naval forces while sustaining ground force 
presence. While rebalancing, it will also be important for the 
Department to develop new capabilities and investments to respond to 
changes in the security environment and technical advancements required 
to maintain an edge, our freedom of action, and ability to project 
power in the Asia-Pacific region. I believe that the rebalancing to 
Asia-Pacific is vital for U.S. future interests, but it can be done 
smartly, using air and sea and geographically distributed ground 
forces, without sacrificing the needed U.S. presence in the Middle 
East.
    Question. Do you believe that it is a ``necessity'' to rebalance 
the U.S. military toward the Asia-Pacific region? If so, why?
    Answer. I share the President's view that future U.S. economic and 
security interests will be closely tied to the Asia-Pacific. I have 
reviewed the Defense Strategic Guidance released last year, and agree 
that the emerging economic and political dynamism in the Asia-Pacific 
will require strong and continuous U.S. commitment.
    Question. Why, if at all, do you believe it is important for the 
U.S. military to maintain and even augment its forward presence in the 
Asia-Pacific region, and what are the advantages to having a forward 
presence?
    Answer. A robust U.S. military presence in the Asia-Pacific has 
underwritten peace and prosperity in the region for the past 60 years. 
The Department should be able to assure regional allies and partners, 
deter threats to regional stability, and prevail in conflicts if 
necessary. If confirmed, I would support the administration's effort to 
work towards a posture that is more geographically distributed--for 
example, the movement of forces to Guam and Australia; operationally 
resilient, with a focus on our sea based assets; and politically 
sustainable--meaning we must work with our partners and allies to 
address their concerns about U.S. presence, such as in Okinawa.
    Question. What is your assessment of the risks and benefits that 
are likely to result from this shift?
    Answer. This shift in U.S. posture is meant to continue supporting 
peace and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region. U.S. forces should be 
present to effectively assure our allies and deter potential 
adversaries. By emphasizing the Asia-Pacific while also focusing on the 
Middle East, rebalancing will necessarily accept risk in other areas 
given the resource-constrained environment. I believe the risks 
associated with this rebalance are manageable. The potentially severe 
cuts stemming from sequestration, however, would seriously threaten the 
Department's ability to implement the strategic guidance, including the 
rebalance.
    Question. What changes, if any, in structure, equipment, and 
training do you believe will be necessary to meet the requirements for 
general purpose ground forces in an Asia-Pacific strategy?
    Answer. My understanding is that our military leadership is already 
working hard to ensure fielded capabilities enable our military 
personnel to think, train, and, if necessary, fight to succeed in this 
theater. The Department is already devoting significant effort to 
understanding how to operate in--or gain access to--those areas where 
our adversaries may try to deny us access and is developing the 
required operational concepts to manage that challenge. We will also 
need to build military-to-military ties and other relationships, as 
well as language and cultural expertise, to operate effectively in the 
Asia-Pacific region. If confirmed, I will work closely with the Joint 
Chiefs of Staff, Services, and Office of the Secretary of Defense 
leadership to assess any additional changes in structure, equipment, 
and training.
                                 china
    Question. How would you characterize the current U.S.-China 
relationship?
    Answer. I would describe the relationship as simultaneously 
possessing elements of cooperation and competition. The U.S.-China 
relationship, of which the defense component is only one part, is one 
of the most complex and important bilateral relationships in the world. 
The United States and China are working together to build a cooperative 
partnership based on practical cooperation in addressing shared 
regional and global challenges--a commitment President Obama and 
President Hu made in January 2011. At the same time, China is rapidly 
modernizing its military and increasingly asserting claims to territory 
in the East China Sea and the South China Sea.
    Question. From your perspective, what effect is China's expanding 
economy and growing military having on the region at-large and how does 
that growth influence the U.S. security posture in the Asia-Pacific 
region?
    Answer. China's expanding economy and growing military are 
developments the United States, allies, partners, and all other nations 
in the region must monitor carefully. On the one hand, China's growth 
and potential create an opportunity to cooperate where our interests 
and those of China converge. At the same time, China's rapid rise and 
the relative lack of transparency surrounding its intentions can be a 
source of anxiety and concern in the region. If confirmed, I will 
evaluate the impact of these developments--as well as the impact of 
other security trends--on requirements for the U.S. defense posture in 
the region.
    Question. What do you believe are the objectives of China's 
military modernization program?
    Answer. As I understand it, China is pursuing a long-term, 
comprehensive military modernization program designed to improve the 
capacity of its armed forces to fight and win high-intensity regional 
military operations of short duration. I understand that Taiwan 
contingencies remain the principal focus of much of this modernization, 
but there are growing indications that China is developing capabilities 
for missions that go beyond China's immediate territorial concerns, 
such as its counter-piracy operations off the Horn of Africa and 
noncombatant evacuation operations from Libya.
    Question. How do you believe the United States should respond to 
China's military modernization program?
    Answer. I believe the United States should continue to monitor 
developments in China's military modernization while encouraging 
Beijing to be more transparent about its military and security 
strategies, policies and programs. The U.S. response to China's 
military modernization should be flexible and supported by the 
continued evolution of our presence and force posture in the Asia-
Pacific region, the strengthening of our regional alliances and 
partnerships, the maintenance of our global presence and access, and 
the modernization of our own capabilities in such areas as countering 
efforts to deny us access and freedom of action.
    Question. U.S.-China military-to-military dialogue has been 
strained over the past several years and efforts to establish and 
maintain mutually beneficial military relations has been hampered by 
China's propensity for postponing or canceling military engagements in 
an apparent effort to influence U.S. actions.
    What is your view of the relative importance of sustained military-
to-military relations with China?
    Answer. I believe there is value in sustained--and substantive--
military dialogue with China as a way to improve mutual understanding 
and reduce the risk that miscommunication and misperception could 
result in miscalculation. If confirmed, I would look for ways to 
strengthen the U.S.-China military-to-military relationship consistent 
with our interests and our values.
    Question. Do you believe that we should make any changes in the 
quality or quantity of our military relations with China? If so, what 
changes would you suggest and, given Chinese resistance to military-to-
military dialogue, how would you implement them?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will seek ways to improve the U.S.-China 
military-to-military relationship, in terms of the quality and the 
quantity of exchanges between the Armed Forces of our countries. I 
would support continuing to pursue exchanges with the Chinese armed 
forces at all levels, and I would look to engage in a wide range of 
areas where we might find common ground to encourage China to act 
responsibly on the regional and global scene.
                              north korea
    Question. What is your assessment of the current security situation 
on the Korean peninsula?
    Answer. North Korea's provocative behavior, large conventional 
military, proliferation activities, ballistic missile program, and 
nuclear program continue to present a serious threat to the United 
States, our regional allies, and the international community. The 
opaque nature of the North Korean system, coupled with an uncertain 
political transition, adds to my concerns. North Korea's December 
missile launch, which was a violation of United Nations Security 
Council Resolutions, provided yet another example of North Korea's 
pattern of irresponsible behavior. If confirmed, I will work with our 
allies and other key partners in the region and internationally to 
ensure that we can deter and, if necessary, defeat North Korean 
aggression.
    Question. What is your assessment of the threat posed to the United 
States and its allies by North Korea's ballistic missile and WMD 
capabilities and the export of those capabilities?
    Answer. I am concerned about North Korea's WMD and ballistic 
missile programs because they present an immediate threat to our allies 
and partners as well as a growing threat to the United States. North 
Korea's December launch--using ballistic missile technology--
underscores our concerns about North Korea's continued pursuit of a 
long-range missile program. The United States will continue carefully 
monitoring, and impede, North Korea's WMD and missile development 
programs and related proliferation activities. If confirmed, I would 
ensure that the Department continues working closely with other parts 
of the U.S. Government to address North Korea's missile and WMD 
programs, take necessary steps to defend the United States and our 
allies, and enhance engagement with our allies to ensure that we can 
deter and, if necessary, defeat North Korean aggression.
    Question. In your view, what additional steps should the United 
States take to defend against the North Korean ballistic missile threat 
and dissuade North Korea from its continued pursuit of ballistic 
missile technology and to stop or slow North Korean proliferation 
missile and weapons technology to Syria, Iran, and others?
    Answer. The United States should continue to work to prevent North 
Korea's proliferation of weapons-related technology by advancing 
international nonproliferation norms and further tightening sanctions 
aimed at impeding development of North Korea's ballistic missile and 
nuclear programs. This includes cooperating with partner nations to 
inspect and interdict vessels and aircraft suspected of carrying 
illicit cargo. The United States should also seek to enhance bilateral 
and trilateral missile defense cooperation with our Republic of Korea 
(ROK) and Japanese allies, particularly in the area of information 
sharing. If confirmed, I would continue to work to strengthen the 
international consensus against proliferation; to invest in programs 
like the Proliferation Security Initiative, which bolsters the will and 
capacity of partner nations to interdict these dangerous shipments; to 
increase WMD-related information sharing with international partners; 
to take necessary steps to defend the United States and our allies; and 
to ensure that our ballistic missile defenses are able to defeat any 
North Korean attack.
       u.s. contributions to international peacekeeping missions
    Question. In testimony before the House Committee on Foreign 
Affairs on July 29, 2009, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations 
(U.N.) stated that the United States ``is willing to consider directly 
contributing more military observers, military staff officers, civilian 
police, and other civilian personnel--including more women I should 
note--to U.N. peacekeeping operations.'' General Dempsey has said the 
United States ``should consider opportunities for U.S. personnel to 
contribute to U.N. peacekeeping missions'' and that ``experience shows 
that even a small number of trained and experienced American 
servicemembers can have a significant, positive effect on U.N. 
operations.'' In your view, should the United States increase the 
number of personnel it contributes in the form of staff positions and 
military observers to U.N. peacekeeping missions and other 
international peace operations?
    Answer. I support in principle additional contributions of U.S. 
military personnel to key positions in U.N. peacekeeping operations 
where the mission is a strategic priority for the Department and the 
United States and where our servicemembers can add significant value to 
the mission effectiveness and efficiencies. I understand that, although 
we still provide military observers to U.N. peacekeeping missions, the 
Department has shifted its contributions almost exclusively to staff 
officer positions so as to maximize the returns on our investment.
    Question. In your view, what are the advantages and disadvantages 
of contributing additional military personnel to U.N. operations in the 
form of staff positions and military observer positions?
    Answer. The success of U.N. peacekeeping operations is important to 
the United States. I believe that the United States should continue to 
provide military personnel to U.N. peacekeeping operations, especially 
for key staff positions that help shape the direction and success of 
the mission. Such support must be practicable and weighed against the 
potential costs and competing demands for military commitments. If 
confirmed, I will carefully evaluate the costs of requested U.N. 
support against the potential positive impacts and U.S. interests.
           department of defense counternarcotics activities
    Question. DOD serves as the single lead agency for the detection 
and monitoring of aerial and maritime foreign shipments of drugs 
flowing toward the United States. On an annual basis, DOD's 
counternarcotics (CN) program expends approximately $1.5 billion to 
support the Department's CN operations, including building the capacity 
of U.S. Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies, and certain 
foreign governments, and providing intelligence support on CN-related 
matters and a variety of other unique enabling capabilities.
    In your view, what is the appropriate role of DOD in counterdrug 
efforts?
    Answer. It is my understanding that the Department plays an 
important role in U.S. counterdrug efforts in support of the National 
Security Strategy, the National Drug Control Strategy, and the Strategy 
to Combat Transnational Organized Crime. The Department supports and 
enables U.S. agencies and foreign partners to be more effective in 
executing their respective counternarcotics responsibilities. In the 
Western Hemisphere, the allocation of DOD capabilities in support of 
U.S. law enforcement interdiction efforts has helped remove hundreds of 
tons of cocaine and deny billions in illicit revenues to transnational 
criminal organizations. I believe this support role is a sensible and 
effective indirect approach.
    Question. In your view, what should be the role of the United 
States in countering the flow of narcotics to nations other than the 
United States?
    Answer. Drug trafficking is by far the world's most lucrative 
illicit activity and therefore is often used as a source of revenue by 
terrorists, insurgents, and other actors threatening our national 
security. In my view, the consequences of narcotics flows beyond U.S. 
borders--for example, the role of drug trafficking in Afghanistan and 
the surrounding region is of particular concern to the Department. If 
confirmed, I look forward to working with Congress, the Office of 
National Drug Control Policy, other agencies in the U.S. Government, 
and military commanders to address the flow of illegal narcotics as it 
affects U.S. national interests.
       national strategy to combat transnational organized crime
    Question. The Director of National Intelligence recently described 
transnational organized crime as ``an abiding threat to U.S. economic 
and national security interests,'' and stated that ``rising drug 
violence and corruption are undermining stability and the rule of law 
in some countries.'' In July 2011, the President released his Strategy 
to Combat Transnational Organized Crime: Addressing Converging Threats 
to National Security. One of the priority action areas designated in 
the strategy is ``enhancing DOD support to U.S. law enforcement''.
    In your view, what role should DOD play in combating transnational 
organized crime and in training and equipping partner security forces 
that have been tasked with combating it?
    Answer. By law, the Department is the lead Federal agency for 
detection and monitoring of the aerial and maritime transit of illegal 
drugs into the United States. In the Western Hemisphere, DOD 
coordinates the efforts of the U.S. interagency and regional partners 
in the detection and monitoring of illicit aerial and maritime drug 
shipments towards the United States. It is my understanding that beyond 
that, the Department's role is to contribute unique capabilities in 
support of law enforcement, other U.S. Government departments and 
agencies, and international partners. That support takes multiple 
forms: military intelligence support to law enforcement; military-to-
military capacity building; broader capacity building support to 
foreign partner security services (including police forces); and 
counter threat finance support. believe the Department should continue 
to focus on delivering unique capabilities in support of other 
departments and agencies that have the lead for combating transnational 
organized crime.
                         counter threat finance
    Question. DOD and the Intelligence Community (IC) have begun 
investing more resources in identifying and tracking the flow of money 
associated with terrorist networks and illicit trafficking, but the 
opportunities for tracking and degrading illicit financing flows are 
not yet matched by the effort and resources devoted to them. 
Identifying and disrupting key individuals, entities, and facilitation 
routes enabling the flow of money that supports terrorism, production 
of IEDs, narco-trafficking, proliferation, and other significant 
national security threats could have an outsized impact on confronting 
these threats.
    What are your views on the role of DOD in counter threat finance 
activities?
    Answer. Our Nation's adversaries, from drug traffickers to 
terrorists or insurgents, rely upon the flow of money to enable their 
activities. All available U.S. Government tools should be employed to 
track and disrupt the finances that support these groups, and the 
Department can bring unique tools to bear. My understanding is that the 
Department is not the lead U.S. agency in counter threat finance, but 
does work with other departments and agencies, and with partner 
nations, to fight our adversaries' ability to access and use global 
financial networks. For example, the Department has worked with the 
Intelligence Community and other interagency partners to identify and 
disrupt our adversaries' finances and remove key sources of insurgent 
funding in Afghanistan. I believe the Department should continue to 
work with law enforcement agencies to ensure military support is 
targeted, tailored, and in line with defense priorities.
    Question. Are there opportunities to replicate or improve upon the 
network-disruption efforts of groups like the Joint Improvised 
Explosive Device Defeat Organization or the Afghanistan Threat Finance 
Cell in impacting other facilitation networks?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Afghanistan Threat Finance 
Cell has been successful at disrupting illicit networks in Afghanistan 
through broad interagency cooperation. The Joint Improvised Explosive 
Device Defeat Organization's quick reaction and innovation has saved 
countless American lives. I believe that the capabilities involved in 
network disruption are worth institutionalizing into the Department. If 
confirmed, I will work with the Department's senior leadership and the 
interagency on this worthy effort.
    Question. In your view, how should DOD coordinate and interface 
with other key agencies, including the Department of Treasury and the 
Intelligence Community, in conducting counter threat finance 
activities?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Department works closely with 
the National Intelligence Manager for Threat Finance as well as the 
Department of Treasury's Assistant Secretary for Intelligence and 
Analysis. The Department also supports other U.S. Government 
departments and agencies and with partner nations to deny and disrupt 
adversaries' ability to use global licit and illicit financial networks 
to affect U.S. interests negatively. I believe the Department should 
continue to support law enforcement agencies, the Department of the 
Treasury, and the Intelligence Community with unique DOD capabilities, 
including planning, intelligence analysis and tools, and the 
integration of intelligence into operations.
                       central america and mexico
    Question. During a March 2012 Senate Armed Services Committee 
hearing, the Commanders of U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Southern 
Command discussed the increasingly dangerous region along the northern 
and southern borders of Mexico and the devastating impact transnational 
criminal organizations are having on the people and security of 
southern Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador. The 
United States has increased its assistance in this region, but--to 
date--DOD has had only a small role.
    What are your views on the threats posed by transnational criminal 
organizations in this region?
    Answer. It is clear that transnational and domestic criminal 
organizations and gangs undermine the security of citizens in many 
parts of the Western Hemisphere. The influence of criminal elements has 
brought an increase in violence as well as an increase in narcotics and 
other illicit trafficking. The root causes of violent crime and 
insecurity are also influenced by endemic poverty and lack of economic 
opportunity, weak government institutions, and widespread corruption 
and impunity. Central America has become one of the most violent 
regions in the world, and this can be largely attributed to the 
influence of these elements. Criminal influences threaten regional 
stability and the fundamental security of an area that lies very close 
to the United States. I believe the United States has a clear interest 
in helping partner nations strengthen their security institutions 
consistent with U.S. values.
    Question. What is your assessment of DOD's role and current 
activities in Mexico and Central America?
    Answer. I have not had a chance to fully assess these issues, but I 
am aware that the Department is building defense relations with Mexico 
based on mutual interest. I am also aware that the Department has a 
wide range of activities and initiatives with partner nations in 
Central America, consistent with our values, shared interests and our 
partner's capacity. My understanding is that that engagements in both 
Mexico and Central America are broadly focused on defense planning and 
institutional reform, human rights training, counterdrug support and 
humanitarian assistance activities. I believe these roles and 
activities are appropriate to support our policies and strategies in 
the region, which focus on efforts to strengthen law enforcement, 
governance and rule of law institutions, while improving economic and 
social conditions that can contribute to insecurity.
    Question. What changes, if any, would you propose to DOD's current 
role and activities in this region?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would need to conduct a thorough review 
before being able to propose specific changes to the Department's roles 
and activities in this region. In general terms, however, I am 
supportive of leveraging the longstanding military-to-military 
relationships within the region to ensure our partner nations' defense 
institutions are capable and remain responsive to civil authorities, 
while being respectful of human rights.
                       interagency collaboration
    Question. The collaboration between U.S. Special Operations Forces, 
general purpose forces, and other U.S. Government departments and 
agencies has played a significant role in the success of 
counterinsurgency and counterterrorism operations in recent years. 
However, much of this collaboration has been ad hoc in nature.
    What do you believe are the most important lessons learned from the 
collaborative interagency efforts in Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere?
    Answer. The importance of unity of effort and action remains one of 
the most critical lessons the Nation has learned from its experiences 
with counterinsurgency, counterterrorism, and stability operations in 
Iraq and Afghanistan. I believe that effective interagency 
collaboration can greatly improve the U.S. Government's preparedness to 
operate effectively in all phases of conflict. If confirmed, I will 
prioritize efforts to ensure interagency collaboration is as robust and 
effective as possible.
    Question. How do you believe these efforts can be improved?
    Answer. Interagency collaboration can always be improved. Ensuring 
that the U.S. military plans and trains with its civilian counterparts 
in other U.S. departments and agencies, and vice-versa, is one way to 
increase our unity of effort in the field. We also need a strong 
interagency planning process to ensure effective use of expertise from 
across the U.S. Government that recognizes each department's and 
agency's unique role and capabilities. I believe that robust civilian 
capabilities and resourcing are critical to achieving national security 
objectives and will be vital to the success of future operations.
    Question. How can the lessons learned in recent years be captured 
in military doctrine and adopted as ``best practices'' for future 
contingency operations?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Department has a variety of 
efforts devoted to capturing and disseminating best practices within 
the Department and to the interagency. The importance of 
institutionalizing lessons learned from the past 10 years of war was 
highlighted in the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance. If confirmed I will 
continue this emphasis.
        intelligence reform and terrorism prevention act of 2004
    Question. The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 
2004 (IRTPA), among other actions, realigned the responsibilities for 
budgeting for and management of intelligence organizations between the 
Secretary of Defense and the head of the Intelligence Community, the 
Director of National Intelligence (DNI).
    What do you believe is the role of DOD in intelligence under IRTPA?
    Answer. The role of DOD, including the defense intelligence 
components, is clearly outlined in law. Under titles 10 and 50 of the 
U.S.C., the Secretary of Defense has broad responsibility for the 
intelligence and intelligence-related activities conducted by the 
Department's components. In addition, under title 50, the Secretary has 
several specific statutory responsibilities for elements of the 
Intelligence Community that are part of DOD, including the Defense 
Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, the National 
Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and the National Reconnaissance Office. 
Consistent with the DNI's statutory responsibilities, the Secretary of 
Defense is responsible for the continued operation of those elements as 
effective organizations within the Department for the conduct of their 
missions in order to satisfy the requirements of the Department and the 
Intelligence Community.
    The Secretary, in consultation with the DNI, is also responsible 
for ensuring that the budgets of the Intelligence Community elements 
that are within the Department are sufficient to satisfy the overall 
intelligence needs of the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, the 
combatant commanders, and other departments and agencies. The Secretary 
is also responsible for the timely response of intelligence community 
elements within the Department to the needs of operational military 
forces. The Department strengthened its management of defense 
intelligence in 2002 by designating the Under Secretary of Defense for 
Intelligence (USD(I)) as lead for its intelligence reform efforts and 
Principal Staff assistant and advisor to the Secretary of Defense and 
Deputy Secretary of Defense regarding intelligence, counterintelligence 
(CI), and security matters.
    As a former member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence 
and the President's Intelligence Advisory Board, I have seen first-hand 
how the Intelligence Community and all its elements have become better 
integrated and cooperative and, if confirmed as Secretary of Defense, I 
look forward to furthering that cooperation.
    Question. Do you believe that the IRTPA strikes the correct balance 
between the duties and responsibilities of the Secretary and the DNI?
    Answer. Yes. I believe the duties and responsibilities of the 
Secretary and the DNI are well balanced under the IRTPA. The IRTPA 
appropriately provided the DNI strong authority to oversee and direct 
the implementation of the National Intelligence Program. As such, the 
DNI is responsible for establishing requirements and developing budgets 
as well as setting objectives and priorities for collection, analysis, 
production, and dissemination of national intelligence. The 
responsibility for execution of DOD intelligence activities remains 
with the Secretary. The Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence 
also holds the position of the Director of Defense Intelligence in the 
Office of the DNI; the position was established to enhance integration, 
collaboration, and information sharing. If confirmed as Secretary of 
Defense, I will reinforce this strong and effective relationship with 
the DNI.
    Question. What changes in the IRTPA, if any, would you recommend 
that Congress consider?
    Answer. As of now, I would not recommend any changes to the IRTPA. 
If confirmed, I would address any proposed changes should the need 
arise.
                           strategic reviews
    Question. What is your understanding and assessment of the DOD 
processes for analysis, decisionmaking, and reporting results for each 
of the following strategic reviews:
    The QDR (section 118 of title 10, United States Code);
    Answer. The QDR is statutorily required, and sets a long-term 
course for the Department by assessing the opportunities and challenges 
that the Nation faces in the emerging global security environment. It 
provides an important opportunity to clearly and concisely articulate 
the national defense strategy and identify priorities for defense 
policy and force planning. Given the new defense strategy and the 
fiscal challenges the Nation is facing, I believe the upcoming QDR will 
be critical in setting the future path of the Department.
    Question. The National Military Strategy (section 153 of title 10, 
United States Code);
    Answer. The National Military Strategy outlines the ways and means 
for our military to ensure national security based on guidance from the 
National Security Strategy and the QDR. Section 153 of title 10 of the 
U.S. Code requires the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to assist 
the President and Secretary of Defense in providing strategic direction 
for the Armed Forces. Because the Chairman prepares the National 
Military Strategy in consultation with the combatant commanders and the 
Joint Chiefs of Staff, I believe that it is the best military advice 
available for the Secretary of Defense. The Chairman also provides an 
annual risk assessment based upon the most current National Military 
Strategy.
    Question. Global Defense Posture Review (section 2687a of title 10, 
United States Code);
    Answer. My understanding is that the Department continuously 
reviews U.S. Global Defense Posture based in part on combatant command 
submissions of annual Theater Posture Plans. The Department has an 
executive-level oversight body, the Global Posture Executive Council 
(GPEC), composed of senior leaders from across the Department and 
including the Department of State. This body provides analysis and 
recommendations to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense. The 
Department submits an annual report to Congress that provides an 
overview of global defense posture strategy and the status of key 
overseas posture realignment actions. My assessment, at this time, is 
that the GPEC offers an appropriate forum for comprehensive analysis of 
key overseas posture issues.
    Question. The Quadrennial Roles and Missions (QRM) Review (section 
118b of title 10, United States Code).
    Answer. The QRM review is a statutorily required review of the 
roles and missions of the Armed Forces and the Department's core 
competencies and capabilities to perform and support these missions. My 
understanding is that the QRM is required every 4 years, most recently 
in 2012, and accordingly will be due again in 2016 submitted with or 
before the President's budget submission for the next fiscal year. I 
believe that the next few years will be very dynamic--both in world 
events and how our military can and should respond--and that the next 
QRM review will be very important to capturing the consequences of 
those changes.
    Question. If confirmed, what recommendations would you make, if 
any, to change title 10, U.S.C., and to improve DOD's processes for 
analysis, policy formulation, and decisionmaking relative to each 
review above?
    Answer. Based on my current understanding, at this time I would not 
request any changes to title 10, U.S.C. If confirmed and after 
reviewing Department processes relating to each review, I will make 
recommendations to Congress and the White House accordingly.
    Question. The QDR must examine the National Security Strategy as 
most recently updated by the President's January 2012 Defense Strategic 
Guidance (DSG). Noteworthy, the DSG states that the ``tide of war is 
receding''.
    Do you agree with that assessment and, if so, how might that 
influence your analysis and recommendations with regard to strategic 
priorities in the QDR?
    Answer. I agree that, with the drawdown of the war in Iraq and 
transition of security responsibilities in Afghanistan, our future 
security challenges will be defined less by the wars of the past decade 
and more by emerging complex threats. The Department remains committed 
to security in Afghanistan and Iraq, and our counterterrorism mission 
will remain a priority for the foreseeable future, but the Department 
needs to begin focusing on the mix of skills and capabilities and new 
technologies that will be needed in the future. The QDR should, 
therefore, examine the current and future security environment, to 
include changes since the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance was released, 
and adjust strategic priorities as appropriate.
    Question. Section 118 in title 10, U.S.C. also requires the QDR to 
identify the budget plan that would be required to provide sufficient 
resources to execute successfully the full range of missions called for 
in that national defense strategy at a low-to-moderate level of risk, 
and any additional resources (beyond those programmed in the current 
Future Years Defense Program) required to achieve such a level of risk. 
The law also requires the QDR to make recommendations that are not 
constrained to comply with and are fully independent of the budget 
submitted to Congress by the President.
    If confirmed, how would you propose to structure the Department's 
QDR analysis and recommendations to address these two requirements?
    Answer. It would be my intent, if confirmed, to oversee a QDR 
process that begins with an assessment of U.S. interests, 
opportunities, and challenges, and concludes with the development of a 
defense program and budget designed to meet the resulting defense 
objectives we set at a low-to-moderate level of risk. If confirmed, I 
would intend to provide my honest appraisal of the resources required 
for defense.
    Question. In your view, is there analytical and/or practical value 
in a defense strategy that is unconstrained by or independent of the 
current budget request or fiscal environment?
    Answer. I think we must be aware of the fiscal environment when 
determining our defense strategy just as the strategy is informed by 
other important environmental factors, such as trends in military 
technology. That strategy must ensure that the U.S. military is be 
capable of meeting crucial national security priorities across the 
range of current and future potential threats.
                       tactical fighter programs
    Question. Perhaps the largest modernization effort that we will 
face over the next several years is the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) 
program to modernize our tactical aviation forces with fifth generation 
tactical aircraft equipped with stealth technology.
    Based on current and projected threats, what are your views on the 
requirements for and timing of these programs?
    Answer. Dominance in the air is essential to the success of our 
forces. I understand that the F-35, which will replace several older 
generation aircraft in the Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps, is 
intended to provide that dominance well into the future. I have not 
looked at the projected threats in detail; however I believe that other 
nations, notably China and Russia, have programs to build advanced 
aircraft that will challenge our current capabilities in the coming 
years. My view is that we cannot let any other nation achieve parity 
with the United States in the ability to control the air.
    Question. What is your assessment of whether the restructuring of 
the JSF program that we have seen over the past several years will be 
sufficient to avoid having to make major adjustments in ether cost or 
schedule in the future?
    Answer. I know that the Joint Strike Fighter is the Department's 
largest acquisition program and that it has experienced significant 
cost increases and schedule slips. I understand that the Department has 
already taken steps to tighten the contract terms for the F-35 and 
restructured the program in 2012 to reduce concurrency, the risk of 
being in production before development is finished. I have not had the 
opportunity to review this program or its restructuring in detail. If 
confirmed, I will make it a high priority to examine the health of this 
program to determine if it is on a sound footing and ensure the 
aircraft are delivered with the capability we need and a cost we can 
afford.
                           navy shipbuilding
    Question. Today's Navy is at its smallest size in decades and could 
decline further without additional shipbuilding efforts. Over the past 
several years, successive Chiefs of Naval Operations (CNOs) have 
concluded that the Navy requires a fleet of at least 313 ships to 
perform its mission. Despite this conclusion, the President's budget 
request for fiscal year 2013 proposed the decommissioning of nine 
ships--two dock landing ships and seven cruisers designed to last 
another 10 to 15 years, in order to address defense budget constraints 
and growing operating costs. Congress rejected the proposal noting the 
Navy's initial investment of $11.6 billion in the nine ships and the 
fact that cutting them creates unnecessary and unaffordable future 
shipbuilding requirements.
    What are your views regarding the CNO's conclusions about the 
appropriate size and composition of the fleet, and the adequacy of the 
Navy's current and projected plans to deliver that inventory of ships?
    Answer. A strong and capable Navy is essential to meet our Nation's 
strategic requirements across the spectrum of operational demands. 
Therefore, the Navy needs a broad set of capabilities among the mix of 
ships in its inventory. I understand the Chief of Naval Operations is 
currently analyzing the Navy shipbuilding goal and will present his 
analysis shortly. If confirmed, I will review these recommendations for 
the Navy's current shipbuilding plan and work with the Navy to ensure 
we have the right size, mix, and usage of our naval forces to meet our 
strategic goals.
    Question. In your opinion, how important is the requirement for a 
313 ship fleet on the ability of the Navy to support the national 
military strategy?
    Answer. I understand that the Navy's presently stated requirement 
is for a 313 ship fleet, but I do not yet know all the details of the 
mix and capabilities of our present and future fleet. I do know the 
United States requires a capable Navy that is robust enough to execute 
the full range of missions called upon by our combatant commanders in 
support of the National Security Strategy and Defense Strategic 
Guidance--including operating persistently across the globe, securing 
freedom of access, responding to crises, and projecting power into 
denied areas. If confirmed, I will work with the Navy and Congress to 
ensure naval forces are appropriately structured to meet our national 
defense needs.
    Question. Do you believe the Navy can meet its goals for the size 
of the fleet in the current budget climate?
    Answer. I believe the President's budget request for fiscal year 
2013 allowed the Navy to meet its current plan for the size of the 
fleet. However, the budget environment that we all are dealing with has 
introduced a good deal of uncertainty for the future of each of the 
armed services. If confirmed, I will work with the Secretary of the 
Navy and the Chief of Naval Operations to understand the impact of 
budget levels on the size of the fleet and how we work within the 
budget constraints to still meet mission requirements.
                           aircraft carriers
    Question. DOD has repeatedly reaffirmed that the United States is 
committed to maintaining a fleet of 11 nuclear powered aircraft 
carriers despite budget pressures, and maintaining 2 carriers on patrol 
in the Middle East. Yet, recent press accounts cite concerns by the 
Navy to maintain the carrier deployment schedule due to declining 
budgets. The Chief of Naval Operations recently stated ``Right now, we 
are committed to providing two carrier strike groups in the Arabian 
Gulf through March. We've been doing this since 2010, and we're 
committed to that, as I said, through this March. We need to take a 
look at that, and we will be, with the Joint Staff and the Services to 
see if we need to continue this.''
    What is your view of the impact of maintaining two carriers in the 
Arabian Gulf on U.S. strategic goals in the region?
    Answer. The Carrier Strike Group is a premier instrument supporting 
the warfighter and demonstrating U.S. resolve and commitment to allies 
around the world. In recent years the Navy has stepped up to meet 
increased demands to support operations in the Middle East, as well as 
to counter other tensions in the region. This support has been critical 
to our goals in the region. If confirmed, I will work with the Navy to 
ensure that we allocate our resources to ensure the level of presence 
necessary to meet our Nation's world-wide strategic goals.
    Question. What are your views about the requirement to maintain a 
fleet of 11 aircraft carriers?
    Answer. I understand that the Department's recent strategic reviews 
indicate that an 11-carrier force is the correct size to support our 
current strategy and provide sufficient carrier strike groups to meet 
overseas presence requirements. However, I also understand that 
increased combatant commander demands for carrier strike groups over 
the past 3 years have stressed the carrier force. Carriers are an 
essential tool given the strategic focus on the Asia-Pacific, an 
inherently maritime theater, and the Middle East, an increasingly 
maritime theater, and the requirement to conduct operations in multiple 
regions simultaneously. If confirmed, I will work with the Navy to 
ensure that we resource a sustainable level of presence that continues 
to support the strategic goals.
                        future role of the army
    Question. In a speech at West Point in February 2011, former 
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates argued that it is unlikely that the 
Nation will commit large land forces to future conflicts, and that the 
Army must ``confront the reality that the most plausible, high-end 
scenarios for the U.S. military [will be] primarily naval and air 
engagements.'' Accordingly, the Army will find it difficult to justify 
the number, size, and cost of its heavy forces. The Defense Strategic 
Guidance, announced in January 2012, echoed that prediction and 
indicated that ground forces would not be sized to conduct large scale 
long-term stabilization operations.
    Do you agree with Secretary Gates assertion that the commitment of 
land forces, on the scale of Iraq or Afghanistan, is unlikely in the 
future? Why or why not?
    Answer. We will continue to need the best Army in the world. But 
the best Army does not mean the largest. We must have the Army be 
appropriately sized for the contingencies we deem likely, and it also 
must be trained and modernized. Our forces must be able to conduct 
operations across the spectrum of conflict and adapt to the security 
environment as it changes. However, given that we must make choices in 
today's fiscal and security environment, I agree that large-scale, 
long-term stabilization operations is an area where we can take risk in 
the future.
    Question. Do you agree that high-end military operations will 
primarily be naval and air engagements such that the Army will have 
difficulty justifying the size, structure, and cost of its heavy 
formations?
    Answer. The Nation needs a robust balance of capabilities in each 
of the warfighting domains--air, sea, and ground. These capabilities 
can and should be complementary of one another--capabilities in one 
domain need not come at the expense of those in another. Furthermore, I 
know from my experience that war is an inherently human endeavor. As 
long as this nation faces adversaries with large, capable ground 
forces, the United States will need an Army with diverse and flexible 
capabilities, which include heavy forces.
    Question. General Raymond Odierno, Chief of Staff of the Army, has 
stated that the Army will continue to be an indispensable part of the 
joint force and that there is a synergy that is gained of all the 
services in order for the military to meet the Nation's needs. He has 
also said the Army provides more than Brigade Combat Teams--the Army is 
the largest contributor to Special Operations Forces and it provides a 
broad range of essential services to combatant commanders to include 
ISR; air and missile defense; logistical support; and signal 
communication support.
    In your view, what are the most important considerations or 
criteria for aligning the Army's size, structure, and cost with 
strategy and resources?
    Answer. The most important considerations are our national security 
requirements. Our security environment and strategy requires the Army 
to have the appropriate size and structure to be able to support 
steady-state operations to shape the environment and deter potential 
adversaries, while simultaneously supporting contingency operations to 
defeat any potential adversary should deterrence fail.
    Question. If confirmed, what actions, if any, would you propose to 
properly align the Army's size and structure with the requirements of 
security strategies and the likely availability of resources?
    Answer. The Department should align the Army's size and structure 
to the strategy in the same way it would align those of any other 
component of the joint force: based on appropriate security scenarios, 
examining the demands of the missions that are most relevant to that 
component and then determining how best to provide the capabilities 
required to accomplish those missions. During this period of budget 
austerity, some tradeoffs across the force may be necessary. If 
confirmed, I will work closely with military and civilian leaders to 
balance maintaining the skills needed to meet our most pressing 
national security demands within the limits of acceptable risk.
                          army force structure
    Question. The Defense Strategic Guidance of January 2012 calls for 
the reduction of Army end strength and force structure over the next 5 
years to 490,000 personnel and 8 fewer combat brigades. Army analysis 
underway and decisions still pending could add a third maneuver 
battalion to the modular armored and infantry brigades requiring a 
further reduction in the total number of Active component brigades to 
support such a redistribution of personnel.
    If confirmed, what guidance would you give the Army regarding 
priorities for planning, decisions, and execution with respect to the 
identification and deactivation of the planned eight and anticipated 
additional brigade deactivations?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would provide the same guidance I would 
give to any Service, which would be to figure out what is in the best 
interest of the Nation's security as expressed in the National Security 
Strategy and Defense Strategic Guidance. The Army, and the other 
Services, must use a holistic approach to ensure our forces are 
organized, manned, trained, equipped, and stationed to best incorporate 
the lessons of the last decade, while remaining ready for the kinds of 
challenges we will face in the future.
    Question. If confirmed, will you prioritize for deactivation those 
brigades based overseas before those based in the United States?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would prioritize the selection of brigades 
for deactivation based on how best to meet the Nation's global strategy 
and objectives while minimizing negative impact on Army families and 
communities and ensuring we maintain our treaty obligations and 
commitment to our allies. I cannot say now whether that results in 
prioritizing overseas units versus U.S.-based units, but, if confirmed, 
I will look comprehensively at this issue. I recognize that any force 
structure reduction will affect Army communities, and I expect that the 
Army and DOD will work with those communities to help minimize the 
impact.
    Question. In your view, can the Army's Active component end 
strength be drawn down below the announced and planned reduction to 
490,000? If so, what in your view would be the impact on strategic 
risk, if any, and, in your view would that strategic risk be acceptable 
or unacceptable?
    Answer. Independent of size, we must maintain the best Army in the 
world. If fiscal pressures compel us to consider further reductions of 
any Service, I plan to study tradeoffs and fully understand the risks 
to our strategy before recommending further cuts. But the size of the 
force should be driven by mission requirements.
    Question. What is your understanding and assessment of the current 
size and structure of the Army's Reserve component? If confirmed, what 
size or force structure changes, if any, would you propose for either 
the Army Reserve or the Army National Guard?
    Answer. The Active and Reserve components of the Army, as parts of 
the entire force, must be sized and shaped to support our strategy. One 
of the foundations of the All-Volunteer Force is the Army National 
Guard with the critical capabilities it provides to the Governors and 
States, in addition to the tremendous support that it provides for 
Federal missions at home and abroad. Another foundation is the Army 
Reserve, which has been a key partner with the Active Army and the Army 
National Guard throughout many diverse missions. However, as the needs 
of the Nation change, I expect that the capabilities and capacities 
resident in the Army National Guard and the Army Reserve may also have 
to change. If confirmed, I will review the results of ongoing studies 
on recommended composition and size before I propose future changes to 
Reserve component end strength.
                           army modernization
    Question. According to a recent study done for the Secretary of the 
Army by former Assistant Secretary of the Army Gilbert Decker and 
retired Army General Louis Wagner, the Army has sunk $3.3 billion to 
$3.8 billion annually since 2004 into weapons programs that have been 
cancelled. The report states that, ``The Army lacks a credible, 
quantitative model and process for determining realistic, achievable 
requirements for modernization and recapitalization given reduced 
budgets.'' The Army has implemented many of the recommendations made in 
the report.
    What is your assessment of the Army's modernization record?
    Answer. I understand that the Army has terminated several large 
acquisition programs in the past, which gave rise to the study 
commissioned by Secretary McHugh in 2010. These program terminations 
were caused by a variety of factors, to include the Army's reliance on 
immature technologies as solutions to very complex and evolving 
military requirements. These factors significantly impacted program 
cost and delivery schedule. I understand that the Army has undertaken 
efforts to address the root causes of these prior terminations in 
current and future acquisition programs. If confirmed, I will emphasize 
the need for sound, cost-informed planning regarding the Army's 
acquisition efforts and work with the Army to continue to address these 
root causes.
    Question. What actions, if any, would you take to ensure that the 
Army achieves a genuinely stable modernization strategy and program?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will closely monitor and oversee the Army's 
acquisition efforts to ensure that stable and affordable modernization 
strategies are adopted and implemented. To this end, I will emphasize 
the need for Army acquisition programs that incorporate sound and 
realistic development strategies, affordable and technically feasible 
requirements, and--to the fullest extent practicable--adequate and 
stable resources. I understand that these are necessary ingredients for 
success in acquisition programs.
    Question. What is your understanding and assessment, if any, of the 
Army's capabilities portfolio review process and its current 
modernization priorities and investment strategy?
    Answer. It would be premature for me to currently assess the Army's 
specific processes for reviewing military requirements or setting 
modernization priorities. I understand that the Capability Portfolio 
Reviews are designed to provide a comprehensive examination of Army 
requirements in an effort to validate their operational value and 
inform the programming and budgeting processes. This holistic approach 
makes sense to me, but if confirmed, I will work with Army leadership 
to review their processes.
    Question. What actions, if any, would you take to sustain the 
momentum of these reviews in stabilizing the Army's modernization 
strategy and priorities?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would encourage and support the Army to 
take any necessary steps to properly define its equipment modernization 
requirements and priorities. I would closely monitor the outcome of 
these processes and support the Army's implementation of a successful 
modernization strategy.
    Question. What is your assessment of the Army's implementation of 
the recommendations of the Decker-Wagner Acquisition Report?
    Answer. I understand that the actions to implement the approved 
recommendations in the 2010 report commissioned by Secretary McHugh are 
either complete or underway. If confirmed, I will review the Army's 
implementation of the recommendations and work to ensure that they are 
reflected in ongoing and future modernization efforts.
                          unfunded priorities
    Question. What is your position on allowing the Service Chiefs to 
respond to Congress with a list of critical unfunded priorities not 
included in the President's budget request?
    Answer. If confirmed, I plan to continue the Department's current 
policy whereby the Service Chiefs may communicate their unfunded 
requirements directly to Congress, once they have informed me of those 
requirements.
                       ballistic missile defense
    Question. In September 2009, President Obama announced that he had 
accepted the unanimous recommendation of the Secretary of Defense and 
the Joint Chiefs of Staff to pursue a Phased Adaptive Approach (PAA) to 
missile defense in Europe. This approach is intended to defend all of 
Europe against existing and emerging threats from Iranian missiles, 
starting in 2011 and increasing in capability with each of its four 
phases. Phase 4 of the European PAA is intended to provide a capability 
to defend against long-range missiles that could reach the United 
States, thus augmenting the existing Homeland missile defense 
capability.
    Do you support the Phased Adaptive Approach to missile defense in 
Europe and, if confirmed, will you implement it?
    Answer. Yes. I support the European Phased Adaptive Approach 
(EPAA). If confirmed, I will ensure the Department continues to support 
implementation of EPAA.
    Question. In February 2010, the Defense Department issued its 
report on the first-ever comprehensive review of U.S. ballistic missile 
defense policy and strategy, the Ballistic Missile Defense Review 
(BMDR), as required by Congress. The BMDR established a number of 
policy priorities, including establishing defense against near-term 
regional missile threats as a top priority of missile defense plans, 
programs and capabilities. It also stated the policy of sustaining and 
enhancing the ability of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system to 
defend the homeland against attack by a small number of long-range 
missiles by countries such as North Korea and Iran, and of hedging 
against future uncertainties.
    Do you support the policies, strategies, and priorities set forth 
in the Ballistic Missile Defense Review and, if confirmed, will you 
implement them?
    Answer. Yes. I support the administration's policies, strategies, 
and priorities as set forth in this review, and, if confirmed, I will 
implement them.
    Question. The two most recent flight tests of the Ground-based 
Midcourse Defense (GMD) system failed to intercept their targets. The 
Missile Defense Agency (MDA) formed a Failure Review Board to determine 
the root cause of the failure and developed a plan to correct it, 
including flight tests to confirm the correction. Until the flight 
tests confirm the correction, MDA has suspended production of the Exo-
atmospheric Kill Vehicles (EKVs) of the type that failed in the 
previous flight tests, in order to ensure that those EKVs do not 
contain a flaw that would need to be corrected later.
    Do you agree that it is a high priority to correct the failure of 
the GMD system kill vehicle and demonstrate through flight testing that 
the system works as intended?
    Answer. I'm not familiar with the technical details associated with 
these flight test failures, but in general I would agree that for any 
system, but especially for a national missile defense system, it is 
important to correct failures and demonstrate effectiveness as quickly 
as possible.
    Question. Do you agree that it is prudent to verify that the flight 
test failure problem has been corrected before resuming production of 
additional EKVs?
    Answer. I am not in a position to express a technical opinion on 
the right course of action, but in general it would seem prudent to 
demonstrate system effectiveness before committing to production. This 
is in line with the administration's principle of ``fly before you 
buy''.
    Question. Do you support the continued enhancement and sustainment 
of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system?
    Answer. I very strongly believe that we should sustain and enhance 
our national missile defense to protect the Nation from limited ICBM 
attack by states like North Korea and Iran.
    Question. Do you support the modernization of the Exo-atmospheric 
Kill Vehicle, which is based on 20-year-old technology?
    Answer. Yes. I understand that the Exo-Atmospheric Kill Vehicle 
(EKV) is a key component of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense System 
that we rely on to protect the United States.
    Question. Would you agree to study the feasibility, advisability, 
cost, and potential advantage of deploying additional ground based 
interceptors in the United States, including at a site located on the 
east coast of the United States?
    Answer. I understand that such a study is required by the NDAA and, 
if confirmed, I will ensure the Department executes the NDAA for Fiscal 
Year 2013 direction to analyze potential locations for another 
continental United States (CONUS)-based missile defense site and to 
conduct environmental impact surveys.
    Question. The United States and NATO are seeking options to 
cooperate with Russia on missile defense. President Obama has announced 
that such cooperation would not limit U.S. or NATO missile defense 
capabilities.
    Do you agree that such cooperation could enhance the security of 
the United States, NATO, and Russia against common missile threats from 
nations such as Iran?
    Answer. Yes. I agree that missile defense cooperation with Russia 
has the potential to enhance the security of the United States, NATO, 
and Russia. I also agree with President Obama's commitment to ensure 
that such cooperation will not limit U.S. or NATO missile defense 
capabilities.
    Question. Do you agree that, irrespective of Russian objections, 
the United States is committed to the continued development and 
deployment of U.S. missile defense systems, including qualitative and 
quantitative improvements to such systems, to defend the homeland, our 
forward-deployed troops, and allies and partners overseas?
    Answer. I agree that the United States is committed to continue to 
develop and deploy missile defenses, including qualitative and 
quantitative improvements consistent with the Ballistic Missile Defense 
Review. The President is on record as saying, and I agree, that the 
United States cannot accept limits on its BMD systems or expose 
information that would put our missile defense systems at risk. The 
President has made clear the need to ensure our missile defense systems 
are capable of defeating the most likely threat we face from North 
Korean and Iranian missiles. It makes sense to explore approaches to 
missile defense cooperation that improve transparency and reassure 
Russia that the U.S. missile defense system does not undermine Russia's 
strategic deterrent.
                                 space
    Question. China's test of an anti-satellite weapon in 2007 was a 
turning point for the United States in its policies and procedure to 
ensure access to space. As a nation heavily dependent on space assets 
for both military and economic advantage, protection of space assets 
became a U.S. national priority.
    Do you agree that space situational awareness and protection of 
space assets should be a national security priority?
    Answer. Yes. Space situational awareness is foundational to all 
space activities, and enables the United States to maintain the 
strategic advantages we derive from space-based capabilities.
    Question. In your view, should China's continued development of 
space systems inform U.S. space policy and programs?
    Answer. Yes. U.S. space policies and programs should be informed by 
China's continued development of space systems, including its 
multidimensional counterspace program, as well as by the range of other 
actors that make the space environment increasingly congested, 
contested, and competitive.
    Question. If confirmed, would you propose any changes to national 
security space policy and programs?
    Answer. At this time, I am unaware of any necessary changes and if 
confirmed, I would plan to continue to implement the President's 2010 
National Space Policy and the 2011 National Security Space Strategy. If 
I find need for changes in the future, I would propose them.
    Question. Do you support the space code of conduct as a non-binding 
agreement among nations that utilize outer space?
    Answer. Yes. An international code of conduct for space 
activities--a non-binding arrangement among nations that utilize 
space--would enhance our national security by helping to maintain the 
long-term sustainability, safety, stability, and security of space. As 
more countries and companies field space capabilities, a code could 
encourage responsible behavior and single out those who would act 
otherwise, while reducing the risk of mishaps, misperceptions, and 
mistrust.
    Question. If confirmed, would you commit to reviewing the overall 
management and coordination of the national security space enterprise?
    Answer. I understand that there has been a recent reorganization of 
the management and coordination of the national security space 
enterprise, including the establishment of the Defense Space Council, 
and the confirmation of the Secretary of the Air Force as the Executive 
Agent for Space. This reorganization has resulted in improvements in 
information flow across the Department and among U.S. departments and 
agencies, and has also improved the process for acquisition and policy 
decisions. If confirmed, I will commit to review this reorganization to 
ensure continued progress.
    Question. What is your view on weapons in space?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would continue to implement the 2011 
National Security Space Strategy, which states that ``it is in the 
interests of all space-faring nations to avoid hostilities in space,'' 
and the President's 2010 National Space Policy, which states that ``all 
nations have the right to explore and use space for peaceful 
purposes.'' The National Space Policy also directs the Secretary of 
Defense to develop capabilities, plans and options to deter, defend 
against, and, if necessary, defeat efforts to interfere with or attack 
U.S. or allied space systems.
    Question. The administration is proposing to free up 500 MHz of 
spectrum for broadband use, a candidate portion of which includes the 
band 1755-1850 MHz, which is used heavily by DOD and other national 
security agencies.
    Do you support this initiative?
    Answer. I fully support the national economic and security goals of 
the President's 500 MHz initiative to make spectrum available for 
commercial broadband use, the implementation of more effective and 
efficient use of limited radio-frequency spectrum and the development 
of solutions to meet these goals.
    Question. Do you support section 1602 of Public Law 106-65, which 
requires the Secretaries of Commerce and Defense and the Chairman of 
the Joint Chiefs of Staff to certify that any alternative band or bands 
to be substituted for spectrum currently used by DOD and other national 
security agencies provide ``comparable technical characteristics to 
restore essential military capability that will be lost as a result of 
the band of frequencies to be so surrendered''?
    Answer. I fully support section 1602 of Public Law 106-65. This 
provision is absolutely critical to protecting and maintaining our 
warfighting capabilities. This statutory requirement is intended to 
ensure the Department is provided access to alternate spectrum before 
surrendering any spectrum critical for national security capabilities. 
Any spectrum reallocations and auctions should provide sufficient time 
for evaluation and certification of such alternate spectrum so that 
national security operations are not put at risk.
    Question. If confirmed, how do you intend to comply with section 
1602 in light of the 500 MHz initiative?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will ensure the Department continues to 
conduct operational and cost-feasibility analysis to guarantee that 
spectrum-dependent national security capabilities are preserved, while 
supporting the economic benefits spectrum provides to our Nation.
    Question. Do you intend to insist that DOD be compensated fully for 
the cost of relocating, if required to do so?
    Answer. Yes. In order to relocate national security capabilities 
that rely on spectrum, while maintaining mission effectiveness, the 
Department must have alternate spectrum with comparable technical 
characteristics, full cost reimbursement for modifying complex weapons 
systems, and adequate time to make the transition.
    Question. How do you propose the Department make more efficient use 
of communications spectrum through leasing of commercial satellites?
    Answer. I understand that both the National Security Space Strategy 
and the Department of Defense Space Policy indicate that the Department 
will make use of commercial systems to the maximum extent practicable. 
I am not familiar with all the details, but will review this more 
thoroughly, if confirmed.
    Question. Do you support more competition in the launch of DOD 
payloads?
    Answer. Yes. in general I favor competition in contracting--to 
include new competitors that can meet certification standards.
    Question. If confirmed, what steps will you take to encourage new 
entrants to the medium and heavy lift launch of DOD payloads while 
balancing affordability, mission assurance, and maintaining the 
viability of the existing launch provider?
    Answer. I understand that the Department has developed criteria to 
certify new space launch vehicles capable of reliably launching 
national security satellites and will openly compete up to 14 space 
launches in the next 5 years, while guaranteeing the existing launch 
provider at least 28 launches.
    Question. Do you support commercial hosting of DOD payloads and if 
so how?
    Answer. Hosted payloads are one of the ways to enhance resilience 
and assure space capabilities in the congested, contested, and 
competitive space environment. If confirmed, I would support innovative 
approaches to improve the national security benefits we derive from 
space in a budget-constrained environment, including through the use of 
hosted payloads.
    Question. What is your long-term vision and support for the Space-
Based Infrared Sensing System (SBIRS)?
    Answer. I understand that the SBIRS provides advanced early warning 
of hostile missile threats, allowing our warfighters to take swift and 
precise action. If confirmed, I would support the Department's 
continued efforts to define the future architecture necessary to 
provide early warning.
    Question. Do you support splitting the systems sensors up to lower 
overall cost of the system?
    Answer. I understand that the Department of Defense Space Policy 
requires the consideration of resilience in space architecture 
development. Splitting space sensors may be one way to achieve 
resilience. If confirmed, I will look at options for improving 
resilience in this system.
                           strategic systems
    Question. Over the next 5 years DOD will begin to replace or begin 
studies to replace all of the strategic delivery systems. For the next 
15 plus years, DOD will also have to sustain the current strategic 
nuclear enterprise. This will be a very expensive undertaking.
    Do you support the President's intent, stated in his message to the 
Senate on the New START treaty (February 2, 2011), to modernize or 
replace the triad of strategic nuclear delivery systems?
    Answer. I support the President's commitment to a safe, secure, and 
effective nuclear deterrent as long as nuclear weapons exist. I believe 
that providing necessary resources for nuclear modernization of the 
Triad should be a national priority. I understand the Department is 
currently modernizing, replacing, or studying recapitalization options 
for each leg of the Triad.
    Question. Do you have any concerns about the ability of the 
Department to afford the costs of nuclear systems modernization while 
meeting the rest of the DOD commitments?
    Answer. I am not able to make a judgment on this at this time; 
however, if confirmed, I will assess the costs to ensure that we 
protect critically important nuclear systems modernization while 
meeting other defense commitments. We must continue to aggressively 
scrutinize each of our programs to ensure we maintain critical 
capabilities in a fiscally responsible manner.
    Question. The Department is committed to modernizing our nuclear 
command and control system, do you support that commitment?
    Answer. I do. An effective, reliable Nuclear Command, Control, and 
Communication (NC3) system is a vital component of a safe, secure, and 
effective nuclear deterrent. NC3 systems provide the President 
redundant and assured capability to execute U.S. nuclear forces under 
any scenario and are a critical element in ensuring crisis stability 
and deterrence.
               u.s. cyber command personnel requirements
    Question. The Commander of U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM) in 
conjunction with the Chiefs of the Military Services and other elements 
of DOD, is now seriously engaged in defining the numbers and 
qualifications of personnel required to conduct the offensive, 
defensive, and intelligence missions of the Command in support of the 
combatant commands and the defense of the Nation in cyberspace. 
Preliminary indications are that the numbers of exceptionally qualified 
operators are going to be substantial. Secretary Panetta committed to 
report to the Committee on Armed Services as early as possible this 
year how the Department would address these serious manpower and 
training requirements.
    Do you believe that the strategy, operational concepts, and 
operational assumptions that underpin CYBERCOM's force planning have 
received sufficient critical scrutiny and analysis?
    Answer. I understand that the Department's leadership has invested 
significant effort analyzing the threat, reviewing the force planning 
model, and is currently addressing how to implement the proposed model. 
If confirmed, I will review this analysis and implementation plan.
    Question. Can the Military Services' current personnel systems and 
practices produce and sustain the number of highly qualified cyber 
operators that CYBERCOM believes are required, especially in light of 
end strength reductions and declining budgets?
    Answer. Recruiting, training, and retaining military and civilian 
personnel needed for cyber operations will be a challenge. This is a 
high priority area for the Department with regard to investment of both 
resources and management oversight and, if confirmed, I will review 
these systems and practices.
    Question. Should consideration be given to providing the Commander 
of CYBERCOM personnel authorities similar to those granted to the 
Commander of SOCOM?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will seek the advice of the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff and senior civilian staff of the Department before recommending 
any additional authorities for CYBERCOM.
                            cyber deterrence
    Question. Do you believe we are deterring and dissuading our 
adversaries in cyberspace?
    Answer. At this time, it appears that the United States has 
successfully deterred major cyber attacks. I expect that deterring and, 
if necessary, defeating such attacks will be a continued key challenge. 
If confirmed I intend to ensure that the Department provides strong 
support to our national efforts in this area.
                       u.s. cyber command status
    Question. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has recommended 
that U.S. CYBERCOM be elevated from a sub-unified to a full unified 
command. The NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 includes a Sense of the Congress 
resolution calling for consultation with Congress before a Presidential 
decision is made to make CYBERCOM a unified command, and asking for 
consideration of a number of issues associated with such a decision.
    Do you believe it would be advisable to consult with Congress prior 
to making a decision to elevate CYBERCOM to a unified command?
    Answer. Yes. If confirmed, I will ensure consultation with 
Congress.
    Question. As the current Commander of the sub-unified CYBERCOM is 
dual-hatted as the Director of the National Security Agency (NSA), what 
are your views on the wisdom of having an intelligence officer serve as 
a unified combatant commander, rather than a line officer with broad 
training and command experience?
    Answer. My sense is that dual-hatting the commander of CYBERCOM and 
the Director of NSA has worked well to date. However, if confirmed, I 
will review specifics of the dual-hatted relationship and assess 
whether it should continue in the future. I recognize that NSA support 
is critical to CYBERCOM's mission given the technical capabilities 
required to operate in cyberspace. In addition, I recognize that the 
CYBERCOM commander requires significant understanding of the 
intelligence community's capabilities and processes to execute his or 
her missions effectively. However, I am also aware of concerns about 
the dual-hatted relationship and, if confirmed, will carefully consider 
these concerns.
    Question. Do you believe that CYBERCOM is mature enough to become a 
unified command, and that policy, strategy, operational planning, and 
rules of engagement to govern operations in cyberspace are sufficiently 
developed to justify this step?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Department has made 
significant progress since CYBERCOM's creation in 2009. This includes 
issuance of a comprehensive strategy for military operations in 
cyberspace. In addition, I am told that CYBERCOM is expanding its 
integration into the Department's deliberate planning, and that the 
Chairman, with the approval of the Secretary of Defense, will issue a 
new set of rules of engagement governing all military operations, 
including cyber operations, in the near future. If confirmed, I will 
evaluate the maturity of the command and will consult closely with the 
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, combatant commanders, and Congress prior 
to any decisions with respect to CYBERCOM.
         china's aggressive theft of u.s. intellectual property
    Question. A recent report by the National Counterintelligence 
Executive confirmed the widespread belief that China is engaged in a 
massive campaign to steal technology, other forms of intellectual 
property, and business and trade information from the United States 
through cyberspace. The current Commander of CYBERCOM has referred to 
this as the greatest transfer of wealth in history and, along with 
others, believes this is a serious national security issue.
    Do you believe that China's aggressive and massive theft of 
technology in cyberspace is a threat to national security and economic 
prosperity?
    Answer. I believe that the theft of intellectual property and other 
sensitive information threatens the United States' military advantage 
and economic prosperity. If confirmed, I will work within the 
Department and with other departments and agencies to address this 
threat.
    Question. What steps, if any, do you believe are needed to deter 
China from such activities in the future?
    Answer. I am not in a position to recommend specific policies, 
guidance, or changes to authorities at this time. I understand that the 
Department is enhancing its cyber defense programs and those of certain 
defense industrial base networks, as well as improving its ability to 
identify the origins of intrusion. If confirmed, I will consider what 
diplomatic and public engagement as well as other actions that should 
be taken to address this challenge.
          dod's role in defending the nation from cyber attack
    Question. What is your understanding of the role of DOD in 
defending the Nation from an attack in cyberspace? In what ways is this 
role distinct from those of the Homeland security and law enforcement 
communities?
    Answer. My understanding is that DHS has the lead for domestic 
cybersecurity. Thus, DHS coordinates national protection, prevention, 
mitigation, and recovery in significant cyber incidents. The Defense 
Department provides technical assistance to DHS when requested. The 
Department's role is to provide the military forces needed to deter the 
adversary, and if necessary, act to protect the security of the 
country. This includes planning against potential threats to our 
critical infrastructure, gathering foreign threat intelligence, and 
protecting classified networks. I believe that the defense, homeland 
security, and law enforcement communities should work together, and 
with our private sector partners to improve network defenses, share 
information on cyber threats, and ensure swift response to threats when 
they manifest themselves.
    Question. Do you believe that defending the Homeland mission will 
require both offensive and defensive cyber forces and tools?
    Answer. If confirmed, this is an area I will review closely. My 
current view is that defending the Homeland from cyber attacks should 
involve the full range of tools at the disposal of the United States, 
including diplomacy and law enforcement as well as any authorized 
military operations.
    Question. This new mission will require substantial resources, 
including personnel. How do you envision generating these additional 
resources in the face of reduced budgets and declining end strength?
    Answer. The current fiscal situation will force hard choices across 
a range of priority missions, including cyber. If confirmed, I will 
consult closely with military and civilian leaders in the Department, 
the President, and Congress in finding the right balance.
                                  iran
    Question. What is your assessment of the military and political 
threat posed by Iran?
    Answer. Iran poses a significant threat to the United States, our 
allies and partners, and our interests in the region and globally. Iran 
continues to pursue an illicit nuclear program that threatens to 
provoke a regional arms race and undermine the global non-proliferation 
regime. Iran is also one of the main state-sponsors of terrorism and 
could spark conflict, including against U.S. personnel and interests. 
Iran is also actively investing in the development of a range of 
conventional capabilities, including air, missile, and naval assets 
that have generated regional anxieties and could threaten our interests 
and personnel in the region.
    Question. What is your assessment of U.S. policy with respect to 
Iran?
    Answer. I believe that President Obama has put in place and pursued 
effectively--with support from the U.S. Congress--a strong, multi-
vector strategy to deal with the threats that Iran poses to the United 
States, particularly its nuclear pursuits. This strategy has included a 
strong diplomatic effort to test Iranian intentions, lay the ground 
work for an international coalition that holds Tehran accountable for 
its transgressions, and isolate Iran in the region and globally. This 
strategy has also included the application of smart, unprecedented, and 
effective sanctions against the Iranian regime that has sharpened its 
choices significantly. Lastly, this strategy has credibly, and smartly 
in my opinion, made clear that all options are on the table. I believe 
that this strategy has made it clear to Iran that the United States 
will do what it must to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, 
and I will continue to implement this policy if confirmed.
    Question. In your view, what has been the effect of sanctions 
against Iran--how effective have they been?
    Answer. I believe that the President with significant help from the 
U.S. Congress, has been able to bring the world community together to 
confront Iran with effective sanctions. As a result of these sanctions, 
Iran's financial, trade, and economic outlook has deteriorated 
significantly. International financial institutions estimate that 
Iran's economy contracted in 2012 for the first time in more than 2 
decades. Iran's access to foreign exchange reserves held overseas has 
diminished. Additionally, the Iranian currency--the rial--reached an 
all-time low in mid-October, losing more than half its value since the 
start of 2012. Inflation and unemployment are also growing. As the 
economic outlook for Iran continues to worsen and as the U.S. continues 
to reinforce our pressure track along with the International Community, 
I believe that pressure is building on Iran.
    Question. You have said that ``Washington should make clear that 
everything is on the table with Tehran--an end to sanctions, diplomatic 
recognition, civil nuclear cooperation, investment in Iran's energy 
sector, World Bank Loans, World Trade Organization membership, Iraq, 
Afghanistan, regional security arrangements, etc.--if Iran abstains 
from a nuclear weapons program, ends support for terrorist groups, 
recognizes Israel, and engages in more constructive policies in Iraq.''
    Do you still hold this view?
    Answer. I do believe that if Iran lives up to international 
obligations, it should have a path to a more prosperous and productive 
relationship with the international community and eventual rejoining of 
the community of nations. The other choice is clear as well--if Iran 
continues to flout its international obligations, it should continue to 
face severe and growing consequences. While there is time and space for 
diplomacy, backed by pressure, the window is closing. Iran needs to 
demonstrate it is prepared to negotiate seriously.
    Question. In March 2012, President Obama said ``when it comes to 
preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, I will take no options 
off the table, and I mean what I say. That includes all elements of 
American power: A political effort aimed at isolating Iran; a 
diplomatic effort to sustain our coalition and ensure that the Iranian 
program is monitored; an economic effort that imposes crippling 
sanctions; and, yes, a military effort to be prepared for any 
contingency.''
    Do you agree with the President's view that ``all options should be 
on the table'' to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon?
    Answer. I agree with the President that the United States should 
take no options off the table in our efforts to prevent Iran from 
acquiring a nuclear weapon. If confirmed, I will focus intently on 
ensuring that U.S. military is in fact prepared for any contingency.
              countering iran's ballistic missile threats
    Question. Iran has hundreds of short- and medium-range ballistic 
missiles today that are capable of reaching forward-deployed U.S. 
forces, allies, and partner nations in the CENTCOM AOR. The Ballistic 
Missile Defense Review Report of February 2010 stated that the United 
States intends to pursue a phased and adaptive approach to ballistic 
missile defense tailored against such missile threats in various 
regions, including the Middle East.
    Do you agree that such a phased adaptive approach will provide 
CENTCOM with the missile defense capabilities needed to defend our 
forward deployed forces and our allies and partners in the region 
against Iranian ballistic missile threats?
    Answer. While I have not looked into the details of the phased 
adaptive approach, I believe this approach includes the appropriate 
steps to protect the United States as well as our forces and interests 
overseas. If confirmed, I will work to ensure the President continues 
to propose a budget sufficient to support our ballistic missile defense 
priorities, balanced with competing priorities, and consistent with the 
projected capabilities of missile defense systems to deal with the 
anticipated threats.
    Question. What role do you see for the Aegis Ballistic Missile 
Defense system with Standard Missile-3 interceptors in U.S. regional 
missile defense capabilities against Iran's ballistic missiles?
    Answer. My understanding is that today, U.S. Aegis combatants 
equipped with Standard Missile-3s are on station and protecting U.S. 
forces, partners, and allies in the Middle East as well as Europe 
against Iran's ballistic missiles. My expectation is that this 
capability will continue to evolve.
    Question. In addition to U.S. missile defense capabilities in the 
CENTCOM AOR, what role do you see for other nations in the AOR to 
contribute to regional missile defense capabilities, such as UAE's 
plans to purchase the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system?
    Answer. Recognizing that global demand for BMD will likely exceed 
the U.S. supply, it is appropriate for the United States to seek 
appropriate burden-sharing arrangements with partners and allies in the 
CENTCOM area and other regions. Such arrangements can increase the 
quantity of missile defense assets in support of U.S. regional 
deterrence and security goals. If confirmed, I will encourage those 
contributions to our mutual defense needs.
    Question. The Intelligence Community assesses that, with sufficient 
foreign assistance, Iran may be technically capable of flight testing 
an ICBM capable of reaching the United States by 2015. What should the 
United States do to hedge against this possibility?
    Answer. I understand that, with the deployed Ground-based Midcourse 
Defense system, the United States is currently protected against the 
threat of limited ICBM attack from states like Iran and North Korea. As 
noted in the 2010 Ballistic Missile Defense Review, it is important 
that we maintain this advantageous position by hedging against future 
uncertainties. If confirmed, I would continue the current efforts to 
prepare options in case the threat changes or if the development of new 
technical capabilities is delayed.
                    u.s.-israel defense cooperation
    Question. In recent years, the NDAA has supported close cooperation 
and substantial funding for a number of critical missile defense and 
rocket defense programs for the state of Israel, including the Arrow 
system, the Arrow-3 interceptor, David's Sling, and the Iron Dome 
system.
    In your view, should the United States continue to support such 
joint cooperation and funding for these programs?
    Answer. Yes. I am proud of the work that the United States has done 
in support of the ballistic missile defense of Israel and, if 
confirmed, I will continue to support these efforts. Missile defense is 
a core area of U.S.-Israel joint cooperation. The importance of these 
efforts came to the forefront with Israel's recent Operation Pillar of 
Defense in Gaza. Throughout the 8 days of the operation, Hamas and the 
Palestinian Islamic Jihad launched over 1,506 rockets into Israel. 
Focusing only on these that posed a real threat to populated areas, 
Iron Dome intercepted 421 rockets with an overall intercept rate of 
approximately 85 percent--saving the lives of countless Israeli 
civilians. This highlights the importance of the work that the United 
States is doing with the Israelis on all layers of missile and rocket 
defense, and if confirmed, I will work to continue and expand this 
cooperation.
            dod's cooperative threat reduction (ctr) program
    Question. The CTR program is focused on eliminating WMD in the 
states of the former Soviet Union and other nations around the world. 
Its key objectives include: (1) eliminating strategic nuclear weapons; 
(2) improving the security and accounting of nuclear weapons and 
weapons-usable fissile material; (3) detecting, eliminating, and 
preventing the proliferation of biological and chemical weapons and 
capabilities; and (4) encouraging development of capabilities to reduce 
proliferation threats. The current CTR umbrella agreement between the 
Russian Federation and the United States will expire at the end of May 
2013, and it has been reported that the Duma does not support extending 
the umbrella as it is currently written at this time.
    Do you support extending this umbrella agreement?
    Answer. Yes. On December 3, 2012, President Obama said, ``If Russia 
believes the CTR agreement hasn't kept pace with the changing 
relationship between our countries, we should update it.'' If 
confirmed, I will support continuation of the nonproliferation 
cooperation with Russia supported by the CTR Umbrella Agreement.
    Question. Do you support continued cooperation with the Russian 
Federation to eliminate WMD in Russia?
    Answer. Yes. U.S. and Russian efforts to secure and eliminate WMD 
have made both countries safer, and have proven to be a productive area 
of cooperation.
    Question. Do you support the use of metrics to assess the progress 
of the CTR programs and to ensure individual programs complete their 
objectives?
    Answer. Yes. Metrics are an important tool in ensuring efficient 
execution of the CTR program.
    Question. In your view, are Russia and the former Soviet Union 
countries making a significant contribution to efforts to reduce the 
proliferation threats they inherited?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Russian Federation and several 
other states of the Former Soviet Union have contributed in many ways 
to reduce threats posed by WMD that they inherited. I understand that 
the Department supports these efforts through the CTR program, which 
helps secure nuclear materials, destroy chemical weapons, and reduce 
the threat from especially dangerous pathogens. Russia and several of 
its neighbors also made important contributions to the Nuclear Security 
Summits held in Washington and Seoul.
    Question. Do you think the CTR program is well-coordinated among 
the U.S. Government agencies that engage in threat reduction efforts in 
Russia, e.g., DOD, the Department of Energy, and the State Department?
    Answer. My understanding is that CTR and other nonproliferation 
programs executed by Federal agencies are coordinated well through the 
leadership of the National Security Staff. If confirmed, one of my 
priorities as Secretary of Defense will be to ensure that all of the 
Department's activities in this area are well-coordinated with 
interagency partners.
    Question. As the CTR program expands to geographic regions beyond 
the states of the former Soviet Union, in your view what proliferation 
prevention and threat reduction goals should the DOD establish or focus 
on?
    Answer. My understanding is that the President has highlighted 
nuclear and biological terrorism as key threats, and that the CTR 
program strongly supports these priorities. I agree with these 
priorities.
    Question. Do you support extending the CTR program to nations in 
the Middle East, especially with respect to containing Syrian chemical 
weapons?
    Answer. My understanding is that the CTR program is authorized to 
undertake activities in the Middle East. The main objective of this 
expanded authority is to enhance the capacity of regional partners, 
particularly the nations that border Syria, to mitigate the threat to 
their territory posed by the potential loss or use of Syria's chemical 
weapons. If confirmed, I would continue to support this effort.
    Question. Do you support extending the CTR program to nations in 
Africa, especially with respect to biological materials?
    Answer. Yes. based on my current understanding, I believe it makes 
good sense to continue to expand the CTR program's geographic reach 
beyond the former Soviet Union. Any cost effective steps we can take to 
keep terrorists from accessing dangerous biological agents by 
partnering with other nations are especially important in regions like 
East Africa where active terrorist threats converge with emerging 
infectious diseases.
                          prompt global strike
    Question. The 2010 QDR concluded that the United States will 
continue to experiment with prompt global strike prototypes. There has 
been no decision to field a prompt global strike capability as the 
effort is early in the technology and testing phase.
    In your view, what is the role for a conventional prompt global 
strike capability in addressing the key threats to U.S. national 
security in the near future?
    Answer. I understand that the Department continues to assess a 
broad range of conventional strike capabilities to address current and 
emerging threats. Conventional prompt global strike weapons could 
provide the President with unique conventional capabilities in certain 
scenarios that include fleeting or otherwise inaccessible time-
sensitive targets for example. I understand, however, that there are 
concerns about this operational concept. At this point, I believe that 
it makes sense to assess potential approaches to conventional prompt 
global strike. If confirmed, I will look forward to further discussions 
with Congress on this topic.
    Question. What approach to implementation of this capability would 
you expect to pursue if confirmed?
    Answer. I understand the Department is continuing to conduct 
research and testing to support the development of concepts and 
technologies for boost-glide systems that could provide the basis for a 
conventional prompt global strike capability. If confirmed, I will 
review implementation options.
    Question. Do you support a competitive procurement of prompt global 
strike systems if they progress to a milestone B stage?
    Answer. In general, where viable options exist, I think the 
Department should take maximum advantage of a competitive procurement 
process.
               nuclear weapons and stockpile stewardship
    Question. Congress established the Stockpile Stewardship Program 
with the aim of creating the computational capabilities and 
experimental tools needed to allow for the continued certification of 
the nuclear weapons stockpile as safe, secure, and reliable without the 
need for nuclear weapons testing. The Secretaries of Defense and Energy 
are statutorily required to certify annually to Congress the continued 
safety, security, and reliability of the nuclear weapons stockpile.
    As the stockpile continues to age, what do you view as the greatest 
challenges with respect to assuring the safety, reliability, and 
security of the stockpile?
    Answer. I understand that the Stockpile Stewardship Program has 
ensured that our nuclear weapons stockpile remains safe, secure, and 
effective without the use of underground nuclear weapons testing. At 
the same time, the challenge we face is that some aspects of today's 
nuclear complex are in need of repair or replacement. If confirmed, I 
will continue to work with the Department of Energy to ensure the 
safety, security, and reliability of our stockpile, and the 
modernization of the nuclear weapons complex infrastructure.
    Question. Do you agree that the full funding of the President's 
plan for modernizing the nuclear weapons complex, commonly referred to 
as the 1251 report, is a critical national security priority?
    Answer. The modernization of the National Nuclear Security 
Administration (NNSA) infrastructure and life extension of our nuclear 
weapons are critical to sustaining a safe, secure, and effective 
nuclear deterrent. If confirmed, I will work to ensure appropriate 
funding levels and cost-effective management for these efforts, which 
will require a substantial and sustained fiscal commitment.
    Question. Prior to completing this modernization effort, do you 
believe it would be prudent to consider reductions below New START 
treaty limits for either the deployed or nondeployed stockpile of 
nuclear weapons?
    Answer. I believe that we should make necessary investments in 
infrastructure modernization regardless of potential future nuclear 
weapon reductions. I understand that the New START treaty does not 
limit nondeployed warheads; if confirmed I will ensure that the 
stockpile, including both deployed and nondeployed nuclear warheads, 
sustains the credibility of the U.S. deterrent, including our 
commitments to extend deterrence to U.S. allies.
    Question. What role does the Nuclear Weapons Council (NWC) play in 
helping to establish key stockpile stewardship goals and modernization 
objectives?
    Answer. The NWC is the primary interface for coordinating nuclear 
weapons enterprise issues between DOD and the Department of Energy. I 
understand that its current top priority is to address stockpile life 
extension and nuclear infrastructure modernization in the current 
fiscal environment.
    Question. Do you support a more active role of the Office of Cost 
Analysis and Program Evaluation (CAPE) in ensuring the programs within 
the Department of Energy and the NNSA are appropriately tailored for 
the best investment of funds possible to achieve a safe, effective, and 
reliable nuclear weapons stockpile?
    Answer. I am not familiar enough with the degree of CAPE's 
involvement with the Department of Energy and the NNSA to make that 
determination at this time. I understand that CAPE has worked closely 
with NNSA over the past year to review NNSA programs, and if confirmed, 
will closely consider CAPE's appropriate role in this regard in the 
future.
                   medical countermeasures initiative
    Question. The administration has produced an interagency strategy 
for the advanced development and manufacture of medical countermeasures 
(MCM) to defend against pandemic influenza and biological warfare 
threats. In this strategy, DOD will be responsible for the rapid 
development and manufacture of medical countermeasures to protect U.S. 
Armed Forces and Defense Department personnel.
    Do you support this interagency strategy and the MCM Initiative 
and, if confirmed, would you plan to implement them?
    Answer. I am very concerned about the threat of biological weapons. 
I support assigning to the Department the responsibility for protecting 
the U.S. Armed Forces and Defense Department personnel with rapid 
development and manufacturing of medical countermeasures. If confirmed, 
I will need to look into the specific plans associated with the 
interagency strategy of the Medical Countermeasure Initiative. I would 
do my best to implement the administration's strategy, consistent with 
any statutory guidance and available funding.
                       defense acquisition reform
    Question. The Weapon Systems Acquisition Reform Act of 2009 (WSARA) 
is designed to ensure that new defense acquisition programs start on a 
sound footing, to avoid the high cost of fixing problems late in the 
acquisition process.
    What are your views regarding WSARA and the need for improvements 
in the Defense acquisition process?
    Answer. I believe that our weapons systems acquisition process has 
substantial room for improvement. My understanding is that WSARA, which 
enacted a number of steps to improve many aspects of weapons system 
acquisition, has been largely implemented by the Department and that it 
is improving the Department's acquisition performance, but that more 
needs to be done. I am aware the Department is continuing to implement 
the remaining provisions of WSARA and other acquisition improvement 
initiatives. If confirmed, I will review these efforts to ensure that 
they are adequate and I will continue to work with Congress and our 
industry partners to improve the way we acquire systems for the 
Department.
    Question. If confirmed, how would you improve all three aspects of 
the acquisition process B requirements, acquisition, and budgeting?
    Answer. Close coordination of these three processes is essential to 
improving the Department's ability to acquire services and systems and 
to obtain the best value for every defense dollar. Since WSARA's 
enactment, progress appears to have been made in regard to closer 
integration of these three processes, but I do not believe that this 
work is complete. In my view, requirements must be feasible and 
affordable, there must be an executable plan to acquire the products 
that meet those requirements, and there must be an adequate budget 
established to conduct the program and acquire the product. If 
confirmed, I will work to bring requirements, acquisition, and 
budgeting into close alignment by ensuring that the individuals 
responsible for these three aspects of acquisition work in conjunction 
with one another and not in isolation.
    Question. If confirmed, how would you improve acquisition 
accountability?
    Answer. I support a chain of command for the acquisition process 
that provides for the clear responsibility and accountability that was 
established by the Goldwater-Nichols Act in the 1980s. For major 
programs, this chain of command begins with the Defense Acquisition 
Executive and runs through DOD component head to the Service or 
Component Acquisition Executive, the Program Executive Officer, and the 
Program Manager. If confirmed, I will hold these individuals 
accountable for acquisition system performance.
    Question. Do you believe that the current investment budget for 
major systems is affordable given increasing historic cost growth in 
major systems, costs of current operations, and asset recapitalization?
    Answer. I have not yet reviewed DOD's investment budget in detail 
or the balance between major systems investments, operations, and 
recapitalization. However, it is clear to me that pursuing only 
affordable programs and controlling costs throughout a product's life 
cycle are critical in any financial environment. All programs must be 
closely managed to avoid cost growth, and the affordability of any new 
requirements must be carefully scrutinized at the outset--before the 
program is authorized. If confirmed, I will examine the investment 
budget closely for near and long-term affordability, taking into 
consideration the potential for cost growth. I will also assess the 
sustainability of the balance between the various accounts that make up 
the Department's budget, including the investment, operations, and 
asset recapitalization portions of the budget.
    Question. If confirmed, how do you plan to address this issue and 
guard against the potential impact of weapon systems cost growth?
    Answer. My understanding is that the Department has been imposing 
affordability cost caps on new programs for over 2 years for both 
production and sustainment costs. These caps are being used to force 
trade-offs between capability and costs early in a program's life 
cycle. If confirmed, I will strongly support the imposition and 
enforcement of these cost caps. I will also work with the Department 
and industry to ensure that we stay on budget and on schedule. DOD and 
the taxpayer cannot afford the excessive cost growth that has plagued 
some programs in the past.
                     reliability of weapons systems
    Question. The Department's process for procuring major weapons 
systems places insufficient emphasis on reliability and maintainability 
and, therefore, produces systems that are increasingly costly to 
operate and sustain. Given that these ownership costs comprise most of 
a given weapons systems' overall lifecycle cost, these increased costs 
could undermine considerably the Department's ``buying power''.
    How would you ensure that the defense acquisition system produces 
more reliable weapons systems?
    Answer. I believe that the key to obtaining necessary reliability 
is to establish effective incentives and, when necessary, to enforce 
the consequences of failure to meet established standards. If 
confirmed, I will ensure that the acquisition system takes this 
approach to achieving the needed reliability performance for its 
weapons systems.
      excessive concurrency in major defense acquisition programs
    Question. Major defense acquisition programs (MDAP) have 
experienced excessive cost-growth and schedule delays due to, among 
other things, too much of an overlap between development and 
production. This has exposed these systems to a high risk of costly new 
discoveries requiring redesign and retrofit late into operational 
testing or production.
    What more can be done to ensure that the defense acquisition system 
safeguards against excessive concurrency in MDAPs?
    Answer. I am not an expert in this field; however, my understanding 
is that some limited degree of concurrency between development and 
initial production can often be the most efficient way to structure a 
weapons system program. However, the Department has in some cases, such 
as the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, taken too much risk with concurrency, 
committing to production well before the design was tested enough to 
know that it was mature and stable. If confirmed, I will work to ensure 
that the risks of concurrent development and production are fully 
understood and taken into account by acquisition decisionmakers before 
a program enters production.
                        procurement program risk
    Question. Another major cause of excessive cost growth and schedule 
delays in how the Department procures major weapons systems and major 
automated information systems (in particular, ``enterprise resource 
planning'' systems, which are vital to defense financial improvement 
and business transformation), relates to the Department's inability to 
identify, price, and therefore effectively manage program risk, (e.g., 
technological, developmental, integration, and manufacturing risk).
    How would you improve the defense acquisition system to ensure that 
the Department can more effectively and timely address all types of 
risk in its major defense procurement programs to better ensure the 
delivery of needed combat capability on time and on budget?
    Answer. I believe the early identification, management, and 
mitigation of program risk is a critical element of any well-managed 
acquisition program. I understand that the Department, through 
implementation of WSARA and other ongoing initiatives, is working to 
improve early planning efforts to better understand risks and to put in 
place steps that will remove and/or mitigate them prior to the 
commitment of a major investment in product development or initial 
production. My view is that new product development inherently involves 
risk and that the risk of any new product development must be actively 
managed if the program is to be successful. If confirmed, I will review 
the adequacy of these initiatives and their effectiveness.
                          services contracting
    Question. Over the last decade, the Department has become 
progressively more reliant upon contractors to perform functions that 
were once performed exclusively by government employees. As a result, 
contractors now play an integral role in areas as diverse as the 
management and oversight of weapons programs, the development of 
personnel policies, and the collection and analysis of intelligence. In 
many cases, contractor employees work in the same offices, serve on the 
same projects and task forces, and perform many of the same functions 
as DOD employees.
    In your view, has DOD become too reliant on contractors to support 
the basic functions of the Department?
    Answer. Although I understand that DOD has been taking steps in 
recent years to reduce its reliance on contractors, I believe DOD must 
continue to manage its workforce in a way that avoids inappropriate or 
excessive reliance on contractor support for basic Department 
functions, while also meeting its obligations to perform work 
efficiently and effectively and to be a good steward of taxpayer 
resources. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department implements a 
workforce strategy that aligns functions and work among military, 
civilian, and contracted services in a cost effective, and balanced 
manner consistent with workload requirements, funding availability, and 
laws and regulations.
    Question. If confirmed, how do you plan to address the issue of 
cost growth in services contracting and ensure that the Department gets 
the most for its money in this area?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will continue the efforts of the 
administration and the Department to improve the visibility and 
accountability of contracted services by expanding and refining the 
data we collect from contractors, as required by statute, in order to 
compare it to our civilian and military workforce planning factors.
    Question. U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan have 
relied on contractor support to a greater degree than previous U.S. 
military operations. According to widely published reports, the number 
of U.S. contractor employees in Iraq and Afghanistan has often exceeded 
the number of U.S. military deployed in those countries.
    Do you believe that DOD has become too dependent on contractor 
support for military operations?
    Answer. At this time I don't have enough information to make an 
assessment. While many support functions for military operations are 
appropriate for contract support, some are more closely associated with 
work that should be performed by government employees (military or 
civilian), or other Federal agencies. I am aware of recent 
recommendations made by the Commission on Wartime Contracting and the 
GAO regarding such dependence and, if confirmed, I will support ongoing 
efforts to implement those recommendations as appropriate.
    Question. What risks do you see in the Department's reliance on 
such contractor support? What steps do you believe the Department 
should take to mitigate such risk?
    Answer. Reliance on contractor support can lead to operational risk 
if contractors fail to perform or perform outside the scope of 
appropriately defined roles. Our experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan 
have also shown that additional risk is introduced when there is poor 
government oversight, further increasing the potential for fraud, 
waste, and abuse. We also know that government oversight is critical to 
ensure appropriate contractor interaction with local communities.
    If confirmed, I will support the Department's ongoing efforts to 
minimize any over-reliance on contractors and ensure the appropriate 
mix of military, civilian, and contract personnel in theater. I will 
also review the Department's progress in implementing recommendations 
made by the Commission on Wartime Contracting, the GAO, and the 
legislative mandates in the NDAA regarding operational contracting 
requirements including considerations for contract support as part of 
the national military strategy, the QDR, and the Chairman's annual risk 
assessment.
    Question. Do you believe the Department is appropriately organized 
and staffed to effectively manage contractors on the battlefield?
    Answer. I do not have enough information yet to make a full 
assessment of this issue. However, I believe that investments made over 
the last few years in the Department's acquisition workforce, as well 
as the implementation of recommendations made by the Commission on 
Wartime Contracting and the GAO, have vastly improved the Department's 
ability to effectively manage contractors on the battlefield. If 
confirmed, I will continue to improve our capabilities in this critical 
area.
    Question. What steps if any do you believe the Department should 
take to improve its management of contractors on the battlefield?
    Answer. At this time I don't have enough information to identify 
specific steps or actions necessary to improve management of 
contractors on the battlefield. If confirmed, I will work with the 
Chairman, the Joint Chiefs, the combatant commanders, and other 
Department leadership to ensure commanders in the field have the 
necessary resources and access to information to effectively manage 
contract support and mitigate against potential risks.
                      private security contractors
    Question. Federal agencies including DOD have spent more than $5 
billion for private security contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan over 
the last decade. Over this period, there have been numerous reports of 
abuses and questionable activities by private security contractors in 
both countries.
    Do you believe DOD and other Federal agencies should rely upon 
contractors to perform security functions that may reasonably be 
expected to require the use of deadly force in highly hazardous public 
areas in an area of combat operations?
    Answer. I believe it may be appropriate to use private security 
contractors for specific security functions in contingency operations 
when they are limited by specific rules for the use of force. Such 
functions include providing security for our military bases in areas of 
operations and protecting supply convoys. Without a significant 
increase in end strength and resources, the Department would not have 
the capacity to take on all the missions private security contractors 
are able to fill. However, the Department must provide proper guidance 
and supervision when using private security contractors and must ensure 
they do not engage in combat operations. I cannot comment on the use of 
private security contractors by other Federal agencies.
    Question. In your view, has the U.S. reliance upon private security 
contractors to perform such functions risked undermining our defense 
and foreign policy objectives in Iraq and Afghanistan?
    Answer. The use of private security contractors in support of 
contingency operations always requires careful oversight. The 
misapplication of the use of force by private security contractors can 
undermine our strategic objectives. If confirmed, I will ensure DOD has 
established policies and procedures to effectively manage private 
security contractors to prevent actions that would be detrimental to 
our policy objectives.
    Question. Section 846 of the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 requires DOD 
to carry out risk assessments and risk mitigation plans whenever it 
relies on contractors to perform critical functions in support of OCOs.
    What steps will you take, if confirmed, to implement the 
requirements of section 846?
    Answer. I believe that contract support is an essential part of the 
total force and will remain so in the future. In many cases contractors 
are absolutely vital. For example transportation command heavily uses 
contractors to move personnel and equipment. If confirmed, I will 
ensure that the DOD policy and operational guidance addresses the 
requirements of section 846 and that proper risk assessments and risk 
mitigation plans are conducted.
    Question. What steps if any would you take, if confirmed, to ensure 
that any private security contractors who may continue to operate in an 
area of combat operations act in a responsible manner, consistent with 
U.S. defense and foreign policy objectives?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will ensure DOD has policies that 
effectively guide the operations of private security contractors when 
they are used, and that we provide proper oversight. We must also 
strive to ensure that all contractors, including private security 
contractors, are appropriately legally accountable for their actions, 
and that private security contractors that operate in an area of combat 
and contingency operations act responsibly.
                  efficiency in department operations
    Question. The Joint Chiefs recently stated that, ``we must be given 
the latitude to enact the cost-saving reforms we need while eliminating 
the weapons and facilities we do not need.''
    In your view, what latitude must be given to the Joint Chiefs to 
enact cost-saving reforms?
    Answer. It is my understanding that the Joint Chiefs supported some 
hard choices that were made in the fiscal year 2013 President's budget 
in order to achieve the savings required to sustain the new defense 
strategy. The Joint Chiefs need Congress to provide them the latitude 
to implement those changes and allow them to execute the new strategy. 
I also understand that it is now a zero sum game. If the Department is 
not able to implement the changes proposed, other offsets must be made, 
while still preserving warfighting capability.
    Question. If confirmed, how would you work with the Joint Chiefs to 
eliminate unneeded weapons?
    Answer. If confirmed, I look forward to the opportunity to sit down 
with the Joint Chiefs and to work together to thoroughly review, 
identify, and eliminate any effort that is outdated or no longer needed 
by the Department.
    Question. Do you support the administration's request for the 
authority to conduct two rounds of Bases Realignments and Closures 
(BRAC) to eliminate unneeded facilities?
    Answer. I understand that the administration's proposal for two 
rounds of BRAC was not accepted by Congress. However, I also think any 
prudent manager has to look at all options when faced with significant 
budget pressures. As with industry, the Department should examine its 
infrastructure and eliminate excess. The BRAC process is not perfect, 
but I believe BRAC is a fair and comprehensive way to right-size the 
Department's footprint, and is the best process identified to date. If 
confirmed, I would have to look at the need for BRAC in the future.
    Question. If so, given the recent report by GAO of the excessive 
costs of the 2005 BRAC round, what would be your priorities in carrying 
out a round of BRAC?
    Answer. It is my understanding that the 2005 BRAC round was an 
anomaly, the only round conducted while the Department was growing. It 
focused on transformation, jointness, and relocating forces from 
overseas. A future BRAC round is more likely to be like the rounds in 
1993 and 1995 where excess capacity was reduced.
                         acquisition workforce
    Question. Over the last 15 years, DOD has reduced the size of its 
acquisition workforce by almost half, without undertaking any 
systematic planning or analysis to ensure that it would have the 
specific skills and competencies needed to meet DOD's current and 
future needs. Since September 11, 2001, moreover, the demands placed on 
that workforce have substantially increased. Section 852 of the NDAA 
for Fiscal Year 2008 established an Acquisition Workforce Development 
Fund to help DOD address shortcomings in its acquisition workforce. 
This requirement was revised and updated by section 803 of the NDAA for 
Fiscal Year 2013.
    Do you agree that the Department would be ``penny-wise and pound 
foolish'' to try to save money by cutting corners on its acquisition 
workforce at the risk or losing control over the hundreds of billions 
of dollars that it spends every year on the acquisition of products and 
services?
    Answer. Yes. It is imperative that DOD act as a good steward of the 
resources entrusted to it by the American people. A properly qualified 
and sized acquisition workforce is central to maintaining this 
stewardship and to ensuring that the Department obtains as much value 
as possible for the money that it spends obtaining products and 
services from contractors.
    Question. Do you believe that the Acquisition Workforce Development 
Fund is needed to ensure that DOD has the right number of employees 
with the right skills to run its acquisition programs in the most cost 
effective manner for the taxpayers?
    Answer. I understand that the Acquisition Workforce Development 
Fund has provided funds necessary for strengthening the acquisition 
workforce with regard to both its size and skills. I support this goal 
and, if confirmed, will work with Congress to ensure that the Fund is 
used effectively to build the capability of the Department's 
acquisition workforce.
                         human capital planning
    Question. DOD faces a critical shortfall in key areas of its 
civilian workforce, including the management of acquisition programs, 
information technology systems and financial management, and senior DOD 
officials have expressed alarm at the extent of the Department's 
reliance on contractors in these areas. Section 115b of title 10, 
U.S.C., requires the Department to develop a strategic workforce plan 
to shape and improve its civilian employee workforce.
    Would you agree that the Departments human capital, including its 
civilian workforce, is critical to the accomplishment of its national 
security mission?
    Answer. Yes. I agree. The civilian workforce performs key enabling 
functions for the military, such as critical training and preparation 
to ensure readiness, equipment reset and modernization. Civilians also 
provide medical care, family support, and base operating services--all 
vital to supporting our men and women in uniform.
    Question. Do you share the concern expressed by others about the 
extent of the Departments reliance on contractors in critical areas 
such as the management of acquisition programs, information technology 
and financial management?
    Answer. Yes. We must ensure that we have a properly sized, and 
highly capable, civilian workforce that maintains critical skills and 
prevents an overreliance on contracted services. If confirmed, I will 
support the administration's focus on reducing inappropriate or 
excessive reliance on contracted support.
    Question. If confirmed, will you ensure that the Department 
undertakes necessary human capital planning to ensure that its civilian 
workforce is prepared to meet the challenges of the coming decades?
    Answer. Yes. If confirmed, I will ensure departmental human capital 
planning employs strategies for recruitment, development, and retention 
of a mission-ready civilian workforce.
    Question. Section 955 of the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 requires a 
5-percent reduction in anticipated funding levels for the civilian 
personnel workforce and the service contractor workforce of DOD, 
subject to certain exclusions.
    What impact do you expect the implementation of section 955 to have 
on the programs and operations of DOD?
    Answer. I do not have enough information at this time to speak to 
potential impact. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department's 
implementation of section 955, both in the civilian and contracted 
support workforces, is done in a manner that best mitigates risk to 
programs and operations, while maintaining core capabilities and 
support to our warfighters and their families.
    Question. What steps will you take, if confirmed, to ensure that 
section 955 is implemented in a manner that is consistent with the 
requirements of section 129a of title 10, U.S.C., for determining the 
most appropriate and cost-efficient mix of military, civilian and 
service contractor personnel to perform DOD missions?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will ensure implementation of section 955 
recognizes that the sourcing of work among military (both Active and 
Reserve components), civilian, and contracted services must be 
consistent with requirements, funding availability, and applicable 
laws.
    Question. What processes will you put in place, if confirmed, to 
ensure that the Department implements a sound planning process for 
carrying out the requirements of section 955, including the 
implementation of the exclusion authority in section 955(c)?
    Answer. If confirmed, I will review the current processes the 
Department has for workforce determinations, along with existing 
management structures and tools. I do not currently have enough 
information regarding possible specific exclusions, but will ensure 
that the workforces of the Department are sized to perform the 
functions and activities necessary to achieve the missions of the 
Department.
                          test and evaluation
    Question. If confirmed, will you make it a priority to ensure that 
the Department as a whole and each of the Services specifically 
maintains its testing organizations, infrastructure, and budgets at 
levels adequate to address both our current and future acquisition 
needs?
    Answer. Yes. Test and evaluation is a critical element of our 
acquisition system, that providing the measured and objective insight 
into a system's performance that is essential to making sound 
programmatic decisions.
    Question. A natural tension exists between major program objectives 
to reduce cost and schedule and the test and evaluation objective to 
ensure performance meets specifications and requirements. What is your 
assessment of the appropriate balance between the desire to reduce 
acquisition cycle times and the need to perform adequate testing?
    Answer. Test and evaluation provides acquisition decisionmakers 
with accurate and objective information on system performance necessary 
to inform critical acquisition decisions. My view is that we should 
generally not gamble on the performance of a weapons system when a 
reasonable amount of testing will significantly reduce the risk of 
redesign or major changes after production has been started. If 
confirmed, I will closely monitor the balance between reducing 
acquisition cycle time and conducting adequate testing to ensure 
warfighters receive affordable, operationally effective, and suitable 
systems when they need them.
    Question. Under what circumstances, if any, do you believe we 
should procure weapon systems and equipment that has not been 
demonstrated through test and evaluation to be operationally effective, 
suitable, and survivable?
    Answer. I understand that test and evaluation plays a critical role 
in product development and fielding. I believe that there are only a 
limited number of cases where it might be necessary to field a system 
prior to operational testing--for example, to address an urgent gap in 
a critical operational capability in an ongoing or imminent conflict. 
Even when fielding is accelerated to meet an urgent need, applicable 
statutes governing the test process must be complied with. There must 
be some level of testing to ensure basic operational performance and 
the safety of the system and to evaluate the system's capabilities and 
limitations to identify any deficiencies that might need to be 
corrected.
    Question. Congress established the position of Director of 
Operational Test and Evaluation to serve as an independent voice on 
matters relating to operational testing of weapons systems. As 
established, the Director has a unique and direct relationship with 
Congress, consistent with the statutory independence of the office.
    Do you support the continued ability of the Director of Operational 
Test and Evaluation's to speak freely and independently with Congress?
    Answer. Yes.
   funding for science and technology (s&t) investments and workforce
    Question. In his State of the Union speech in 2010, the President 
said that ``maintaining our leadership in science and technology is 
crucial to America's success.'' The DOD budget submissions for fiscal 
years 2012 and 2013 supported continued investment in science and 
technology, despite the significant budget pressure.
    Do you support maintaining growth in the DOD's S&T investments?
    Answer. I understand and appreciate the importance of government 
investment in science and technology in the area of national security. 
Maintaining technological superiority against current and projected 
adversaries underpins our National Security Strategy and it is only 
through this investment that we can sustain this critical edge. I fully 
support the President's commitment to science and technology, and if 
confirmed, I will work to support science and technology investments in 
our defense budget.
    Question. How will you assess whether the science and technology 
investment portfolio is adequate to meet the current and future needs 
of the Department?
    Answer. If confirmed, I anticipate conducting reviews of the 
Department's current science and technology investment strategy, in the 
context of the Department's priorities and capability needs. I also 
acknowledge the necessity of maintaining a strong technology base.
    Question. Well over half of all graduates of U.S. universities with 
advanced degrees in science and technology are non-U.S. citizens. Due 
to a variety of reasons, many return to their home countries where they 
contribute to competing against the United States in technology 
advancement.
    What is your view on steps that the Department should take, if any, 
to ensure that DOD and the defense industrial base are able to recruit 
and retain scientists and engineers from this talent pool?
    Answer. In order to maintain our technology superiority, it is 
essential for the Department to attract the best and brightest minds. 
The President made clear in his recent inaugural address that including 
bright students and engineers from abroad in America's workforce is an 
imperative for our future. If confirmed, I will work within the 
Department and the administration to find ways in which the Department 
could enhance its skilled workforce, to include its scientific and 
engineering segments, by drawing upon a broad talent pool and by 
seeking to recruit and retain the best possible individuals, within the 
construct of national security requirements.
                        defense industrial base
    Question. The latest QDR addressed the need for strengthening the 
defense industrial base. Specifically, it said: ``America's security 
and prosperity are increasingly linked with the health of our 
technology and industrial bases. In order to maintain our strategic 
advantage well into the future, the Department requires a consistent, 
realistic, and long-term strategy for shaping the structure and 
capabilities of the defense technology and industrial bases--a strategy 
that better accounts for the rapid evolution of commercial technology, 
as well as the unique requirements of ongoing conflicts.''
    What is your understanding and assessment of the current state of 
the U.S. defense industry?
    Answer. I understand the Department relies on a broadened technical 
and industrial base that is now far more global, commercial, and 
financially complex than ever before. For the past decade the defense 
industrial base has enjoyed a period of increasing budgets that is now 
at an end. While I think our industrial base is currently strong, I am 
concerned about the impact that further defense budget cuts would have 
on the ability of the base to provide the broad range of products and 
services that the Department and our Nation need. If confirmed, the 
continuing health of the industrial base will be a high priority for 
me.
    Question. Do you support further consolidation of the U.S. defense 
industry?
    Answer. Expansion and consolidation of industries and companies is 
the hallmark of a robust free market economy as it responds to the 
market forces. I expect, and encourage, the free market to act when 
faced with changing demands. However, I believe the Government must 
also be watchful for consolidations that eliminate competition or cause 
market distortions. At the end of the Cold War there was a major 
consolidation at the top tier of defense businesses. My understanding 
is that the Department's leadership have indicated that further 
consolidation at the top tier would not be viewed favorably. I have not 
studied this in detail; however, my initial assessment is that this is 
the correct view. I also believe that each individual case of 
consolidation, acquisition, or merger dealing with our defense firms 
must be examined carefully for what is best for the warfighter and the 
taxpayer, particularly with regard to its impact on competition.
    Question. What is your position on foreign investment in the U.S. 
defense sector?
    Answer. Foreign investment has generally benefitted the United 
States, including DOD, by providing needed capital and increasing 
access to leading-edge technologies. However, I believe foreign 
investment in the defense sector can also expose critical national 
defense-related technologies to risks, including loss of the 
intellectual property that gives our military personnel the 
technological edge they rely upon. Congress has put provisions in place 
to address critical national security concerns of this nature, 
including the Committee on Foreign Interests in the United States led 
by the Department of the Treasury. If confirmed, I will continue DOD's 
commitment to its oversight function and to ensuring that national 
security concerns are addressed in transactions that involve foreign 
investments in the United States, including investments in the defense 
sector.
    Question. If confirmed, what steps if any do you believe DOD should 
take to most effectively and efficiently manage risk and ensure the 
continued health of the U.S. defense industrial base?
    Answer. If confirmed, I would seek to ensure the sources of 
manufacturing and services in the industrial base that the Department 
relies on are capable of meeting our warfighters' requirements. I will 
ensure that the Department proactively monitors the base to identify 
any risks that need to be addressed. When necessary and as resources 
permit, the Department should be prepared to act to ensure that key 
industrial capabilities are sustained, although, unfortunately, this 
will not be possible in every case. I will also make myself accessible 
to the best source of information on the industry's concerns--industry 
itself. This means working closely and communicating with private 
industry to ensure that, as the Department makes changes necessary to 
adapt to a new set of strategic and budgetary challenges, it does not 
inadvertently jeopardize critical elements of the industrial base. I 
believe the Department must simultaneously be receptive to industry's 
concerns and address their issues as effectively as possible, 
consistent with the Department's priorities and the resources 
available.
                    reset and reconstitution funding
    Question. The Department has a substantial backlog of maintenance 
availabilities due to the high tempo and demand of more than a decade 
of combat operations. Senior DOD officials have testified that they 
will require 2 to 3 years of additional funding to restore readiness 
through reset and reconstitution of their equipment and personnel.
    Do you agree with the assessment that the DOD will need 2 to 3 
years of additional funding for reset and reconstitution?
    Answer. I would need to review the facts behind the specific 
estimate of 2 to 3 years; however, I believe that it will require 
considerable time to repair equipment returning from operations in 
Afghanistan because of the nature of the repairs and difficulty of 
removing the equipment from theater.
    Question. If confirmed, how will you balance maintenance and reset 
requirements with fiscal realities and future risk in developing your 
budget request?
    Answer. The goal of reset and reconstitution is to produce ready 
units with the equipment they need for contingencies or current 
operations. Any further budget cuts must be balanced against this need 
for ready units, and, if confirmed, I will work with the services to 
prioritize the readiness of the units needed to implement the 
President's strategy.
                           operational energy
    Question. Last July, the Assistant Secretary of Defense for 
Operational Energy Plans and Programs published a policy that any 
alternative drop-in replacement fuel procured for DOD-wide use and 
distribution within the Class III (Bulk) supply chain must compete with 
petroleum products and any awards will be based on the ability to meet 
requirements at the best value to the government, including cost.
    What is your view of this policy?
    Answer. I understand this policy to be a positive one. It is 
prudent for the Department to engage in tests and demonstrations that 
confirm defense equipment can operate on a range of fuels; however, as 
the Department allocates its limited resources to ensure it delivers 
necessary warfighting capability, it should only buy large volumes of 
these fuels when they are cost-competitive with petroleum products.
    Question. What is your assessment of section 526 of the Energy 
Independence and Security Act of 2007 and how it should apply to 
military operations of DOD?
    Answer. My understanding is that section 526 has not restricted the 
Department from purchasing whatever fuel it has needed to support 
military operations. Rather, section 526 applies only to contracts that 
are for the express purpose of buying alternative or synthetic fuel. As 
long as mission capability is not restricted, it is helpful to have 
this guidance that new fuels should not be any more polluting than 
fuels produced from conventional petroleum sources.
    Question. Considering the potential of further cuts to Defense 
budgets and the importance of energy security, do you believe DOD 
should jointly invest with other government agencies in the 
construction of a commercial biofuels refinery?
    Answer. I understand the Department is in the early planning stages 
of such a project, undertaken in partnership with the private sector 
and the Departments of Energy and Agriculture, which have the lead 
roles for the Federal Government in promoting biofuels. I have not 
reviewed this project; however, I believe the Nation's long-term energy 
security would benefit from a competitive, domestic renewable fuels 
industry--the Department has a long history of contributing to national 
innovation by innovating to meet the defense mission. As a major 
consumer of liquid fuels, the Department would benefit from that 
industry as well. That said, I am not yet in a position to comment on 
the trade-offs between the value of this investment and the other 
priorities of the Department. Given the Department's funding 
constraints, I would, if confirmed, examine the value of this 
investment carefully before authorizing it to proceed.
    Question. If confirmed, what priorities would you establish for 
Defense investments in energy technologies?
    Answer. My broad priorities for defense energy investments will be 
those that: increase military capabilities, provide more mission 
success, and lower total cost. If confirmed, I will focus on both 
operational effectiveness and efficiency--improving the energy 
performance of aircraft, ships, ground vehicles, and military bases; 
reducing the vulnerability of our fuel supply lines; lowering the load 
our expeditionary forces must carry; and diversifying the energy 
supplies we use.
                       law of the sea convention
    Question. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea is 
pending consideration in the U.S. Senate.
    What is your view on whether or not the United States should join 
the Law of the Sea convention?
    Answer. I strongly support U.S. accession to the Law of the Sea 
Convention. Ratification would allow the United States to take its 
rightful place and enjoy the benefits and protections of this treaty.
    Question. How would being a party to the Law of the Sea convention 
help or hinder the United States' security posture?
    Answer. Becoming a party to the Law of the Sea Convention would 
enhance the U.S. security posture around the globe in several 
significant ways. First and foremost, accession would enable the United 
States to reinforce all of the rights, freedoms, and uses of the sea 
codified in the Convention, including the navigational and over-flight 
rights that are critical to the global mobility of U.S. forces as well 
as the right to submit extended continental shelf claims that would 
help us preserve the rights to potential resources. Additionally, 
accession would help the United States to promote a common rules-based 
approach among other nations to peacefully resolve their territorial 
and maritime disputes, particularly in East Asia. Further, accession 
would add to the Department's credibility in a large number of Asia-
focused multilateral venues where Law of the Sea matters are discussed. 
Lastly, accession would reassure some nations who have expressed 
concerns of the legality of cooperative security efforts that United 
States supports, such as the Proliferation Security Initiative. The 
United States has longstanding interests in freedom of the seas and 
respect for international law, and our accession to the Convention 
would further demonstrate our commitment to those national interests.
                        congressional oversight
    Question. In order to exercise its legislative and oversight 
responsibilities, it is important that this committee and other 
appropriate committees of Congress are able to receive testimony, 
briefings, and other communications of information.
    Do you agree, if confirmed for this high position, to appear before 
this committee and other appropriate committees of Congress?
    Answer. Yes.
    Question. Do you agree, if confirmed, to appear before this 
committee, or designated members of this committee, and provide 
information, subject to appropriate and necessary security protection, 
with respect to your responsibilities as Secretary of Defense?
    Answer. Yes.
    Question. Do you agree to ensure that testimony, briefings, and 
other communications of information are provided to this committee and 
its staff and other appropriate committees?
    Answer. Yes.
    Question. Do you agree to provide documents, including copies of 
electronic forms of communication, in a timely manner when requested by 
a duly constituted committee, or to consult with the committee 
regarding the basis for any good faith delay or denial in providing 
such documents?
    Answer. Yes.
                                 ______
                                 
    [Questions for the record with answers supplied follow:]
               Questions Submitted by Senator Carl Levin
                   u.s.-armenian defense relationship
    1. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, what is your assessment of the U.S.-
Armenia defense relationship, and what steps, if any, would you take to 
strengthen that relationship?
    Mr. Hagel. The U.S.-Armenia defense relationship is sound. As with 
all relationships, there is room to grow and areas where we can 
strengthen our cooperation and partnership. That growth will be based 
on shared interests and willingness to cooperate, available resources, 
and capacity to absorb new capabilities and missions.
    If confirmed, I would continue to engage Armenian leaders to 
strengthen existing areas of engagement and identify new areas of 
cooperation that support Armenia's defense reforms, especially its 
peacekeeping brigade, and continue its ability to deploy in coalition 
operations. I would look for the United States to be Armenia's partner 
of choice and help Armenia's defense establishment contribute to 
regional security and stability.

                             nuclear triad
    2. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, the Global Zero report provides an 
illustrative example of a future alternative nuclear policy and force 
structure in the 2022 timeframe that would eliminate, through 
negotiated international agreements, our land-based Intercontinental 
Ballistic Missiles (ICBM) as a means to reduce the size of our nuclear 
forces consistent with our obligations under Article VI of the Nuclear 
Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT).
    Do agree with General Kehler, the Commander of U.S. Strategic 
Command and with the 2010 Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) that at the 
present time, the triad of strategic nuclear forces continues to serve 
U.S. national security interests?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I agree that the NPR's recommendation remains the 
right one at the present time. I believe that the triad's mix of ICBMs, 
submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs), and nuclear-capable 
heavy bombers continues to support U.S. national security interests 
under New START limits.

                        malign iranian influence
    3. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, Iran supports proxies in Lebanon, 
Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Bahrain, and the Western Hemisphere. In your 
view, what is the impact of Iran's activities in places such as 
Lebanon, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Bahrain, and the Western Hemisphere?
    Mr. Hagel. Iranian support for proxy groups and terrorist 
activities in the Middle East region and in places around the world 
constitutes a serious threat not only for the stability of our partners 
and allies who are directly impacted by these activities, but also for 
U.S. interests. In short, Iran's activities are malevolent and intended 
to be destabilizing. If confirmed, I intend to focus intently on 
countering Iran's malign influence--including preventing Iran from 
acquiring a nuclear weapon.

    4. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, in your view, what role--if any--
should the Department of Defense (DOD) play in countering malign 
Iranian influence in the Middle East?
    Mr. Hagel. In my view, DOD could help to counter Iranian malign 
activities in at least three ways. First, the Department should support 
diplomatic and intelligence efforts to inhibit the activities of 
Iranian proxy and terrorist groups. Second, the Department can leverage 
its presence in the region to deter and, when directed by the 
President, disrupt Iranian malign activities. Third, the Department 
could leverage its extensive security cooperation relationships with 
countries in the Middle East and around the world to partner in 
countering Iranian destabilizing activities.

                                 syria
    5. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, the civil war in Syria continues and 
President Assad's commitment to continuing his regime's ongoing 
operations appears unwavering--despite broad international 
condemnation. You have indicated that you share the Obama 
administration's position that Assad must go. In your view, what is the 
most effective way to bring about the end of the Assad regime?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that a political transition should remain our 
goal. The best way to weaken the Assad regime at this time is through 
political, diplomatic and economic pressure, as well as assisting the 
unarmed opposition. If confirmed, I will support the President's 
ongoing reassessment of the continuously changing conditions on the 
ground in Syria to determine what additional steps may be appropriate.

    6. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, what is your assessment of the 
composition and intentions of the Syrian opposition?
    Mr. Hagel. Based on my observations, the opposition is made up 
largely of Syrians wanting to free themselves from a repressive ruler. 
An important exception is the Al Nusrah Front, which the State 
Department has listed as an alias of al Qaeda in Iraq. In my view, the 
United States should continue to encourage the Syrian Opposition 
Council to pursue an approach that isolates extremist elements but is 
inclusive of a broad range of communities inside Syria, and I will 
continue this policy if confirmed.

    7. Senator Levin. Mr. Hagel, are the opposition's motivations 
consistent with U.S. interests in the region?
    Mr. Hagel. In Syria, the opposition is made up of disparate groups 
with varying interests and values. I believe that the Syrian Opposition 
Council's fundamental motivation to end Assad's rule is consistent with 
U.S. interests. U.S. efforts in Syria should aim to partner with those 
groups that share U.S. interests and values, and isolate those groups--
such as the Al Nusrah Front--which do not.
                                 ______
                                 
                Questions Submitted by Senator Jack Reed
                           armenian genocide
    8. Senator Reed. Mr. Hagel, could you please provide clarification 
of your views on the Armenian genocide?
    Mr. Hagel. As President Obama has emphasized in his April 24th 
Remembrance Day statements, the achievement of a full, frank, and just 
acknowledgement of the facts of what occurred in 1915 is in all of our 
interests. I further concur with the President that the best way to 
advance that goal is for the Armenian and Turkish people to address the 
facts of the past as a part of their efforts to move forward. If 
confirmed, I would continue to strongly support the State Department's 
efforts to work with Armenia and Turkey to normalize relations so they 
can forge relationships that are peaceful, productive, and prosperous.

                           global zero report
    9. Senator Reed. Mr. Hagel, there have been a number of questions 
raised about the Global Zero report on U.S. nuclear policy and force 
structure. I want to make sure we understand the context of that 
report. Is it correct that the report provides an illustrative 
alternative nuclear policy and force structure 10 years in the future--
as an example of how we could continue to reduce our reliance on and 
the number of nuclear forces, in line with our future security 
requirements?
    Mr. Hagel. In the Global Zero report we took a longer-term view of 
what might be possible under different circumstances. The policy and 
force structure it provided was indeed illustrative in nature. The 
study group's analysis was intended to provide a stimulus to national 
debate about how many nuclear weapons may be enough in the future, and 
to illustrate a possible pathway forward.

    10. Senator Reed. Mr. Hagel, is it correct that the illustrative 
reductions envisioned would be made through bilateral and multilateral 
negotiated arms control agreements?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I agree with the administration's view, as stated 
in the 2010 NPR, that large disparities in nuclear capabilities on 
either the United States or the Russian side could raise concerns and 
could hinder our pursuit of a stable, long-term U.S.-Russian 
relationship. Therefore, I agree that further reductions should be 
negotiated bilaterally or, if appropriate, multilaterally.

    11. Senator Reed. Mr. Hagel, is it correct that pursuing additional 
reductions to our nuclear forces, beyond the limits established in the 
New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), is consistent with our 
obligations under Article VI of the NPT, and with the findings and 
conclusions of the April 2010 NPR?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, I believe that pursuing negotiated reductions below 
New START levels would be consistent with both Article VI of the NPT 
and with the conclusions of the 2010 NPR.

    12. Senator Reed. Mr. Hagel, is it correct that the illustrative 
example of an alternative U.S. nuclear policy and force structure in 
the next decade would be consistent with maintaining a safe, secure, 
and effective nuclear deterrent force?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.
                                 ______
                                 
               Questions Submitted by Senator Bill Nelson
                          strategic dispersal
    13. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, our Nation must recognize the 
spectrum of threats that confront us daily, and position our assets 
accordingly. Pearl Harbor taught us assets and resources should not be 
concentrated in one place. Dispersing our capital ships is in our best 
national security interest and specifically, dispersing the East Coast 
carrier fleet is a national security priority. One needs to only look 
at the Pacific Fleet to see an excellent example of strategic 
dispersal. The Navy has stationed its Pacific Fleet at four different 
homeports--San Diego, CA; Bremerton, WA; Everett, WA; and Japan, but 
has been slow to accomplish the same thing with our Atlantic Fleet. The 
military decision to disperse the fleet has been studied, and 
restudied. Admiral after admiral, secretary after secretary, have all 
testified keeping a second Atlantic homeport is essential to national 
security. In addition, the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) 
clearly states, ``To mitigate the risk of a terrorist attack, accident, 
or natural disaster, the U.S. Navy will homeport an East Coast carrier 
in Mayport, Florida.''
    Moving a carrier from Norfolk, VA, to Mayport is a cost-effective 
national security objective. As Secretary of Defense, will you maintain 
the DOD's support for moving a carrier from Norfolk to Mayport and, as 
your predecessors have done, will you ensure strategic dispersal is 
again added as an objective in the 2014 QDR?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that our country faces a spectrum of threats and 
concur that strategic dispersal is a critical element in reducing risk 
and providing strategic flexibility in the event of natural disaster, 
manmade calamity or attack by a foreign nation or terrorists. If 
confirmed, I will look at strategic dispersal as a means of ensuring we 
address strategic risk to our national security objectives. I support 
the Department's efforts to continue to prepare Mayport for carrier 
access.

    14. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, will you support the addition of 
programmed funds in the next President's budget to do so?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will ensure future budgets and the 
upcoming QDR evaluate all options to maximize our strategic objectives, 
including strategic dispersal of our carriers on the east coast.

           excess capacity in overseas military installations
    15. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, the value of having a forward 
footprint with our men and women stationed abroad, as well as the 
cooperation it breeds with our allies, is critical to our national 
security. However, I am concerned about the excess capacity of U.S. 
military bases in overseas locations and the drain of our taxpayers 
dollars to maintain these installations. I believe this excess capacity 
and the potential for savings needs to be addressed before we begin to 
close or realign domestic installations. Please share your thoughts on 
this issue.
    Mr. Hagel. A prudent manager has to look at all options when faced 
with significant budget pressure. That includes reviewing options for 
consolidation overseas--particularly in Europe, where the Department is 
reducing force structure and there are clear opportunities to reduce 
supporting infrastructure. The Department should begin this review 
immediately, as specific legislation is not required to consider base 
closures overseas. However, this should not preclude the Department 
from taking simultaneous action to realize infrastructure savings at 
domestic installations. Given the size of the cuts the Department is 
facing, it is unrealistic to expect to achieve all necessary savings by 
looking only at overseas infrastructure.

              moratorium on drilling in the gulf of mexico
    16. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, in 2006, you cosponsored the Gulf of 
Mexico Energy Security Act to restrict leasing in areas of the eastern 
Gulf of Mexico within 125 miles of Florida, including areas in the Gulf 
of Mexico east of the military mission line. Previous Secretaries of 
Defense (Rumsfield, Gates) supported a moratorium on drilling east of 
the military mission line. These training ranges are vital for our 
fifth generation air superiority assets--F-22, F-35--as well as 
providing an area for the critical testing of the weaponry on various 
airframes. As Secretary of Defense, will you maintain this vital 
military test and training area?
    Mr. Hagel. My understanding is that the Department conducted 
analysis in 2010 that identified some parts of this region where 
drilling would not interfere with military activities if the drilling 
activities are significantly constrained--for example, in some regions, 
drilling was deemed compatible if the structures were subsurface. If 
confirmed, I will review this analysis and ensure the Department does 
not put critical military test and training capabilities at risk.

                          afghanistan drawdown
    17. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, President Obama plans to withdraw 
combat forces from Afghanistan by 2014. The U.S. and North Atlantic 
Treaty Organization (NATO) allies are transitioning from fighting to 
training and advising the Afghan security forces, and during his recent 
meeting with President Karzai, President Obama signaled the transition 
to Afghan security forces may be accelerated. What footprint should the 
U.S. and NATO allies have after 2014?
    Mr. Hagel. The President has stated, and I agree, that the scope of 
the international mission in Afghanistan after 2014 should focus on two 
primary objectives: first, to deny safe haven to al Qaeda and its 
affiliates; and second, to train, advise, and assist the Afghan forces 
so they can maintain their own security. This mission shift is 
consistent with what was agreed upon by the United States, NATO allies, 
and ISAF and Afghan partners at the Chicago NATO Summit last year and 
also with our long-term Strategic Partnership Agreement with the Afghan 
Government, signed May 1, 2012. I understand that the President is 
considering a range of options provided by his military commanders and 
national security team. I have not been a part of those discussions, 
but, if confirmed, I will work to ensure that the appropriate resources 
and capabilities are made available for the post-2014 mission.

    18. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, how will the Afghanistan Government 
afford to maintain their military operations?
    Mr. Hagel. At the 2012 NATO Summit in Chicago, the United States, 
NATO allies, and other international partners pledged to provide 
significant financial assistance after 2014 to help maintain the Afghan 
National Security Forces (ANSF). The Afghan Government also pledged to 
provide at least $500 million a year for the ANSF beginning in 2015, 
and to increase this amount over time as its economy grows. The 
international donor community has also pledged its support to 
Afghanistan's continued economic and social development after 2014 
through commitments made at the 2012 Tokyo conference, including 
pledges for $16 billion in civilian aid over 4 years. With this 
support, as Afghanistan's economy grows and its revenues increase, 
Afghanistan will increasingly be able to take responsibility for future 
security costs. Further, it is my understanding that DOD is working 
closely with the Afghan Government to ensure that the force we are 
building and developing is a sustainable one. If confirmed, I will 
continue to work closely with the Afghan Government to ensure that the 
ANSF is sustainable within available resources.

                    camp lejeune water contamination
    19. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, Florida has 16,000 veterans and 
civilians in the Camp Lejeune water contamination registry, second only 
to North Carolina. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry 
(ATSDR) is completing studies designed to determine the size and scope 
of water contamination at Camp Lejeune. In January, ATSDR released the 
preliminary results of a drinking water study, which shows the 
following:

         Housing complex drinking water was contaminated with 
        dry cleaning solvents from 1957 to 1987 above the current 
        Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) limits.
         Separate housing areas were contaminated with organic 
        compounds (from 1 million gallons of spilled gasoline) from 
        1953 to 1985 above the current EPA limits.

    Recent ATSDR findings show drinking water contamination at Camp 
Lejeune from 1953 through 1987. Although the U.S. Navy Bureau of 
Medicine had established Navy drinking water standards during this time 
period, DOD continues to state that no standards existed. As Secretary 
of Defense, will you ensure that these misleading statements from the 
Navy and Marine Corps receive the proper oversight from you?
    Mr. Hagel. The health and well-being of our servicemembers, their 
families, and civilian employees is of the utmost importance to me. If 
confirmed, I will be committed to finding answers to the many questions 
surrounding the historic water quality issue at Camp Lejeune and 
ensuring appropriate oversight of these efforts. Working with the 
leaders of the Navy and Marine Corps, I will engage the proper experts 
and review all the facts pertaining to the Bureau of Medicine 
Instruction to which you refer, ensuring that accurate information is 
provided to all who believe they may have been exposed to contaminated 
water at Camp Lejeune. The Department will continue to understand the 
meaning of ongoing scientific efforts and provide comprehensive 
science-based answers to our servicemembers, their families, and 
civilian employees.
    I applaud Congress' efforts to support families through the passage 
of the Honoring America's Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families 
Act of 2012 and I pledge to support the Department of Veterans Affairs 
efforts to properly implement the legislation.

                          air force oversight
    20. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, the Air Force recently released two 
major decisions which affected Florida: the Air Force Materiel Command 
(AFMC) reorganization and the KC-46 basing selection. We believe there 
is room for improvement in regards to the Air Force routing and seeking 
validation through the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) on 
these very important decisions.
    In regards to the KC-46 basing decision and the analysis to 
determine future requirements, the level of engagement and coordination 
between the Air Force and Combatant Commands (COCOM), as well as OSD 
validation of the Air Force decision, requires additional attention.
    On December 18, 2012, in section 2814 of the National Defense 
Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2013, the Air Force was 
directed to submit a report and include the efficiencies and 
effectiveness associated with the AFMC reorganization, as well as the 
extent to which the proposed changes were coordinated with OSD.
    Critical decisions of a strategic nature need to be properly 
coordinated with the COCOMs. As Secretary of Defense, how will you 
direct your staff to ensure the Air Force seeks OSD validation prior to 
releasing decisions such as these?
    Mr. Hagel. It is my understanding that each Service has a 
decisionmaking methodology and process for managing its operations, 
organizational structure, and basing decisions. OSD oversees these 
efforts, which involve key stakeholders including the COCOM. For 
reorganization decisions such as these, I think it is important that 
the Secretary of Defense allow the Military Departments the latitude to 
make proposals to streamline management functions while also preserving 
core capabilities. OSD oversight of this process ensures that affected 
stakeholders have the opportunity to provide their perspective on the 
implications of proposed changes. If confirmed, I will ensure my staff 
and the combatant commands continue to appropriately examine the Air 
Force approach to basing decisions.

                          taiwan relations act
    21. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act and 
the Six Assurances of 1982 have contributed to the peace and stability 
of the Asia-Pacific region for the past 3 decades. With the military 
balance--including air superiority--gradually shifting in China's 
favor, what are your plans to implement the security commitment the 
United States has for Taiwan under this framework?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that the Taiwan Relations Act has contributed to 
peace and stability in the region for over 30 years. In my view, the 
increasing complexity and sophistication of the military threat to 
Taiwan from China means that Taiwan must devote greater attention to 
asymmetric concepts and innovative technologies to maximize Taiwan's 
strengths and advantages. If confirmed, I would work closely with 
Congress, throughout DOD, and with our interagency partners to ensure 
the continued effective implementation of all of the relevant 
provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act.

    22. Senator Nelson. Mr. Hagel, as Taiwan is likely to retire some 
of its older fighter aircraft in the next 5 to 10 years, do you believe 
that sales of advanced aircraft are a next step in this commitment?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I would work closely with Congress, 
throughout DOD and with our interagency partners to ensure the 
continued effective implementation of all of the relevant provisions of 
the Taiwan Relations Act. If confirmed, I will look at what specific 
capabilities will help Taiwan meet its self-defense needs in light of 
the security situation in the Taiwan Strait and the evolving military 
capabilities on the mainland.
                                 ______
                                 
            Questions Submitted by Senator Claire McCaskill
                           contracting reform
    23. Senator McCaskill. Mr. Hagel, in 2011, in its final report to 
Congress, the Commission on Wartime Contracting found that as much as 
$60 billion, roughly $12 million ``every day for the past 10 years,'' 
was lost to waste or fraud through contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan. 
In addition to the financial costs, the Commission found that poor 
planning, management, and oversight of contracts damaged the United 
States' strategic and diplomatic objectives overseas. Building on the 
Commission's recommendations, last year I offered legislation, along 
with our former Senate colleague, Jim Webb, to reform wartime 
contracting practices within DOD, the Department of State, and the U.S. 
Agency for International Development (USAID). Major provisions of this 
legislation were signed into law as part of the NDAA for Fiscal Year 
2013.
    Section 843 of the new law requires the Secretary to establish a 
chain of authority and responsibility for policy, planning, and 
execution of operational contract support. Do I have your commitment to 
direct the needed resources to look at our overreliance on contractors 
and our loss of core capabilities in certain areas and to report back 
to me on the responsibilities you lay out after this review?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. If confirmed, you have my commitment to look at the 
Department's reliance on the use of contractors in contingency 
operations and to assess what core capabilities should be retained in 
DOD.

    24. Senator McCaskill. Mr. Hagel, section 846 requires the 
Secretary of Defense to conduct a risk assessment of certain types of 
contracting, including not only private security contractors, but also 
contracts for training, intelligence, and a host of other problem 
areas. You have your pick of poster child case studies in Iraq and 
Afghanistan to know this is a problem. DOD does not operate in a vacuum 
in wartime. Do I have your commitment to work with the State Department 
and USAID, who are also subject to this provision, and to conduct this 
assessment based not just on whether you are legally entitled to 
contract something out, but on whether it makes sense in the long term, 
for both our military mission and our own future capabilities to do so?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. If confirmed, I will work with State Department and 
USAID in conducting the required risk assessment of contingency 
contracting from not just a legal perspective but also from the 
perspective of our long-term capability needs.

                                 f/a-18
    25. Senator McCaskill. Mr. Hagel, the F/A-18 program has been a 
model acquisition program, and continues to deliver Super Hornets on-
time and on-schedule at less than half the cost of an F-35. The fact 
is, the Super Hornet is an aircraft that has performed superbly in 
virtually every combat operation and delivers nearly all of the 
capability.
    As the F-35 program continues to slip, we are nearing the end of 
the production line for the Super Hornet, which is currently scheduled 
to shut down in 2014. I am concerned that the United States could be 
left with a gap in the defense industrial bases' ability to produce 
strike fighters and eliminates DOD's ability to rely on the F/A-18 
lines to manage future F-35 cost, performance, and schedule risks. As 
Secretary of Defense, how would you address this gap?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will assess the strike fighter 
capability mix, the progress of the F-35, and the state of the F/A-18 
production line to determine if a gap exists and evaluate the options 
to address it for feasibility and affordability.

    26. Senator McCaskill. Mr. Hagel, international sales of the F/A-18 
could help mitigate the risk of the closing of domestic strike fighter 
production line that can address our own strike fighter shortfall. Will 
you ensure that DOD actively supports international sales of the F/A-
18?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will ensure the Department actively 
supports foreign military sales of U.S. defense products including the 
F-18.

                             sexual assault
    27. Senator McCaskill. Mr. Hagel, DOD under Secretary Panetta's 
leadership has implemented a number of initiatives to try to curb 
sexual assaults in the military--a problem he has stated could be six 
times greater than reported--and we have seen both military and 
civilian leaders acknowledge that sexual assault is a problem that 
affects the recruitment, retention, and readiness of our armed forces. 
This committee has taken up the issue of sexual violence in the 
military and has implemented some reforms in the NDAA, most recently in 
fiscal year 2013.
    We have seen some promising programs developed by the Services, as 
well. You mentioned in one of your responses to the advance policy 
questions that you look forward to hearing about the outcome of the Air 
Force's pilot program that assigns an attorney to each victim of sexual 
assault who requests one to represent them through the process. I have 
been impressed by the training for special investigators going on at 
the Army's Military Police School at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. 
This course has been recognized as the ``gold standard'' for special 
investigator training, which both DOD and Congress have encouraged the 
other Services to follow.
    As a former prosecutor, I understand how critically important the 
investigation process is to the outcome of sexual assault cases. The 
investigation process is also key for victims, as victims may feel more 
comfortable coming forward to report their cases if they have 
confidence that the military justice system is working and that 
perpetrators will be brought to justice.
    While I recognize each of the Military Services have a unique 
history and culture, that should not be an excuse for refusing to adopt 
best practices to combat a problem they all share. Will you push the 
Services to adopt best practices in their efforts to combat sexual 
assault?
    Mr. Hagel. It is my understanding that the Services are sharing 
information about their processes and working to adopt these best 
practices across the Services. If confirmed, I will work to continue 
and expand this important effort.

    28. Senator McCaskill. Mr. Hagel, will you review whether the 
Services have done enough, in your view, to address the problem of 
sexual assault within the military?
    Mr. Hagel. Sexual assault is a horrible crime and cannot be 
tolerated, ignored, or condoned in DOD. If confirmed, I will be fully 
committed to combating this crime and determined in reducing the 
instance of sexual assault, with a goal of eliminating it from the 
military.
    I know that the over the past year, the Department has developed 
and implemented several new policies and procedures to prevent the 
crime of sexual assault, support victims, strengthen investigations, 
and hold offenders appropriately accountable. I also know that these 
efforts are not enough.
    The Department must continue its multi-discplinary approach in 
combatting sexual assault. Prevention efforts are important, so that 
the crimes do not happen in the first place. These efforts must ensure 
that every servicemember, from top to bottom in our military ranks, 
knows that dignity and respect are core values we must all live by.
    But accountability is key and people who violate the standards of 
acceptable behavior must be held appropriately accountable for their 
actions. I believe a positive first step was elevating the initial 
disposition of the most serious sexual assault cases to the level of 
colonel or Navy captain, or higher. Military commanders are essential 
to making sexual assault prevention and response efforts successful.
    I look forward to learning more about the Department's ongoing 
program to develop Special Victims Capabilities across each of the 
Services, a program legislated in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013, and 
which is under development in the Department in the form of special 
training and standardized procedures for investigators, prosecutors, 
paralegals, and victim witness liaisons. This program's objective is to 
enhance the quality of investigations and accountability in sexual 
assault cases and I fully support it.
    I also look forward to hearing more about the impact of the Air 
Force's pilot program, implemented in January, which assigns an 
attorney to a victim of sexual assault who requests one to represent 
them. I believe this could be a very good way to improve 
accountability. It will improve victim confidence and increase the 
number of victims who are willing to report; thereby increasing the 
number of cases that can be investigated and the number of cases in 
which offenders can be held appropriately accountable.
    If confirmed, I will be resolute in advancing the Department's 
prevention, investigation, accountability, victim support and 
assessment programs in order that we address the problem of sexual 
assault in a persistent, comprehensive, and effective manner.
                                 ______
                                 
               Questions Submitted by Senator Mark Udall
                      alternative energy programs
    29. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that the U.S. 
military's dependence on foreign oil represents a national security 
risk?
    Mr. Hagel. I am concerned about the Nation's dependence on foreign 
oil. At the same time, U.S. military forces need to be able to buy fuel 
wherever they operate. I support efforts to reduce the military's 
energy needs and diversify supplies in order to increase military 
effectiveness.

    30. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, do you support the continuation of 
DOD's energy conservation and alternative energy development programs?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the continuation of energy initiatives that 
improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the Defense mission. The 
Department has a long history of harnessing innovation to meet defense 
challenges in ways that can benefit the civilian economy, and there is 
potential for such gains in this case.

    31. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, do you believe those programs 
represent a strategic investment that will benefit U.S. national 
security and increase our military capabilities?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. Energy efficiency and alternative energy programs 
are critical for cost savings, operational effectiveness, and our 
strategic national security goals. The Department has a long history of 
harnessing innovation to meet defense challenges in ways that can 
benefit the civilian economy, and there is potential for such gains in 
this case.

                                 africa
    32. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, what specific actions should be taken 
by DOD to address the wave of extremism in the Sahel region of Africa?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the United States should continue to support 
France's strong actions to counter al Qaeda in the Lands of the Islamic 
Maghreb's effort to establish a safe haven in Mali, including by 
providing DOD assistance. The Departments of Defense and State should 
also continue contributing to the robust international support to the 
African-led International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA). AFISMA will 
help to degrade the threat posed by al Qaeda and allied terrorist 
groups and put Mali on a path to stability.
    Elsewhere in the Sahel region, the United States should continue to 
work with regional partners to strengthen their security capacities and 
create the conditions to apply region-wide pressure on extremist 
groups.

    33. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, what methods would you prescribe to 
prevent additional countries and national governments in North Africa 
from falling to extremists?
    Mr. Hagel. Extremists in North Africa clearly pose a significant 
threat to regional stability. If confirmed, I will work with the 
Secretary of State, other interagency counterparts, international 
partners and allies, and countries across the region to build the 
capacity of their militaries to counter these threats and to assist 
North African governments in improving governance and security for 
their populations. This includes preventing the expansion of terrorist 
networks and then degrading and, ultimately, defeating terrorist 
groups.

                                pakistan
    34. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that there are steps 
that the United States should take to further pressure Pakistan to 
withdraw their tacit support for terrorist groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba 
and the Haqqani Network in order to enhance the prospects for a stable 
peace in the region?
    Mr. Hagel. The ability of militant and terrorist networks to 
operate on Pakistani soil poses a threat to the United States, 
Pakistan, and other countries in South Asia. Therefore, the United 
States should continue to work to ensure that Pakistan meets its 
commitments, including supporting a durable settlement in Afghanistan, 
pressuring the Haqqani Network, and not allowing Pakistani territory to 
be used to launch terrorist attacks on other countries. Our approach 
should apply diplomatic pressure where needed and ensure our security 
assistance, which is an important tool, is not unconditional but 
conditions advance U.S. strategic interests.

                          military healthcare
    35. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, as Secretary of Defense, would you 
continue to prioritize funding for military suicide prevention 
programs, as well as for improved treatment for physical and 
psychological injuries?
    Mr. Hagel. I am deeply concerned about the significant rise in 
military suicides and am firmly committed to prioritizing funding for 
the full range of the Department's mental and physical health programs. 
These programs include: suicide prevention programs, such as the Army's 
Shoulder to Shoulder and Navy's Combat and Operational Stress Control 
resilience and fitness programs; peer-to-peer programs such as the 
Vets4Warriors which focuses on our Reserve members; transition and 
family support programs, such as Recovery Care Coordination; and 
quality of life programs, such as those offered through Military 
OneSource. In addition, I will continue ongoing collaboration with the 
Department of Veterans Affairs, with continued emphasis on the Military 
Crisis Line, to ensure that our members receive support as they 
transition back to their civilian lives. Finally, and most importantly, 
I agree with Secretary Panetta that there is a significant leadership 
role and responsibility for preventing suicides and building the 
resilience of the force. If confirmed, I will continue to look for 
opportunities to improve our military and civilian leaders' ability to 
understand the needs of distressed servicemembers and reduce stigma so 
that they can be properly guided to the support they need.

                     role of the reserve component
    36. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, would you agree that, over the last 
decade, the National Guard and Reserves have demonstrated their value 
to the military mission in support of domestic disaster relief, combat 
operations, and in a variety of other roles at home and abroad?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. The National Guard and Reserves have played an 
integral role during the past decade, mobilizing in unprecedented 
numbers for the wars in Afghanistan. They have also been critical to 
Homeland defense and security, highlighted by their heroic efforts 
during Hurricane Sandy.

    37. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, please discuss your views of the 
Reserve and National Guard and the role they should play in the coming 
years.
    Mr. Hagel. The Reserve components have served with distinction over 
more than a decade of war and continue to be a relevant and cost effect 
part of the Total Force. In a time of declining budgets and complex 
contingencies, I believe that the Department will continue to call on 
both Active and Reserve components to accomplish the domestic and 
overseas requirements of the new strategy. I understand that the 
Department is still in the process of finding the proper Active 
component/Reserve component mix that will most effectively accomplish 
our new strategy in a constrained fiscal environment. If confirmed, I 
will work with our military leaders on this important issue.

                            russian policies
    38. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, since Vladimir Putin was reelected as 
Russia's president, the Russian Federation has sent mixed signals for 
what its defense and foreign policies will be going forward. The 
creation of a so-called ``Eurasian Union''--which would consist of 
Russia and other former Soviet republics--was a key component of 
President Putin's campaign platform, and is viewed by some as an 
attempt by Russia to ``re-Sovietize'' the region, which would pressure 
U.S. allies in the region. Former Senator John Kerry (nominated to be 
Secretary of State) has reaffirmed the U.S. Government's unwavering 
support for the independence of these countries and their right to 
choose ``political, military, [and] economic'' alliances ``free from 
coercion''. One such U.S. strategic partner, Azerbaijan, recently 
allowed a lease with Russia for the Gabala Radar station--the last 
Russian installation on Azerbaijan's soil--to expire due to a 
disagreement over the cost of the lease, continuing a trend of moving 
away from Moscow's orbit. As Secretary of Defense, what will be your 
policy to ensure that the independence of U.S. strategic partners in 
the region is preserved?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will support continuing engagement with 
the leaders of the defense and security institutions of former Soviet 
Republics to advance reform and defense modernization goals, to 
contribute to regional stability and security, and to advance our 
shared security interests. It is possible for countries in the region 
to preserve their independence while also having a constructive, 
positive relationship with the United States, Russia, and other 
countries. As sovereign independent nations these countries must pursue 
the bilateral and multinational relationships that they assess are in 
their own national interests, but I would work to ensure the United 
States is the partner of choice. Working with the Department of State 
and other U.S. agencies, I would, if confirmed, continue to support 
partners in the region building their government institutions, 
practices, and capabilities to enable them to exercise the full measure 
of responsibilities and opportunities of independent, sovereign 
countries.

                      cooperative threat reduction
    39. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, do you support the work conducted 
under the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) programs which seek to 
eliminate threats, demilitarize systems, and to secure stocks of 
existing weapons of mass destruction (WMD)?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I believe that the Cooperative Threat Reduction 
Program is a vital mechanism for partnering with other nations to 
counter the threat posed by weapons of mass destruction. The program is 
now global and focused on core U.S. priorities, including nuclear 
security, countering biological threats, and destroying chemical 
weapons. If confirmed, I will continue to support the work of this 
vital program.

    40. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, how would you characterize your own 
views on the importance and priorities of the CTR program, originally 
undertaken in the former Soviet Union, and more recently expanding into 
other territories including Africa and the Middle East?
    Mr. Hagel. In the immediate aftermath of the Cold War, I believe 
that it made good sense for the CTR program to focus on reducing the 
threat posed by the former Soviet Union's nuclear arsenal. Based on 
information currently available to me, I believe that the program's 
recent expansion into new geographic areas, including Africa, the 
Middle East, and Southeast Asia also makes good sense, as does a new 
focus on biological threats. In my view, CTR remains a very important 
tool in reducing risks to the United States.

                         nuclear modernization
    41. Senator Udall. Mr. Hagel, do you support the restoration of 
funding appropriations to maintain the U.S. nuclear triad, and for key 
nuclear infrastructure programs such as the Chemistry and Metallurgy 
Research Replacement Nuclear Facility in the fiscal year 2013 
appropriations bills?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the President's commitment to a safe, secure, 
and effective nuclear deterrent as long as nuclear weapons exist. I 
believe that maintaining the triad and modernizing our nuclear forces 
and the nuclear weapons infrastructure are national security 
priorities. If confirmed, I will give sustained attention to these 
issues.
                                 ______
                                 
              Questions Submitted by Senator Kay R. Hagan
                    sexual assault/domestic violence
    42. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, as you and I discussed earlier this 
week, the number of sexual assault and domestic violence cases reported 
in the military every year is appalling. Studies show that there are 
3,200 reported cases every year, but even more astonishing is that the 
actual number is estimated at 19,000 cases. This means that somewhere 
around 80 percent of all cases go unreported.
    A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report concluded that most 
victims stay silent because of ``the belief that nothing would be done; 
fear of ostracism, harassment, or ridicule . . . or labeled trouble 
makers.'' That same report goes on to say that some victims go silent 
because they do the math: only 8 percent of cases that are investigated 
end in prosecution, compared with 40 percent for civilians arrested for 
sex crimes.
    This year's NDAA included provisions to combat this problem, 
including enhanced education, training, and awareness for our troops 
and the leadership. While this is a positive step, just having a zero-
tolerance policy and getting out the message is not always enough.
    If confirmed, do you pledge to ensure the NDAA sexual assault 
provisions are implemented as rapidly as possible?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    43. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, how do you intend to further prevent 
sexual assault and domestic violence?
    Mr. Hagel. Sexual assault is a horrible crime and it cannot be 
tolerated, ignored, or condoned in DOD. If confirmed, I will be fully 
committed to combating this crime and determined in reducing sexual 
assault, with a goal of eliminating it from the military.
    I know that the over the past year, the Department has developed 
and implemented several new policies and procedures to prevent the 
crime of sexual assault, support victims, strengthen investigations, 
and hold offenders appropriately accountable. I also know that these 
efforts are not enough.
    The Department must continue its multi-disciplinary approach in 
combating sexual assault. Prevention efforts are important, so that the 
crimes do not happen in the first place. These efforts must ensure that 
every servicemember, from top to bottom in our military ranks, knows 
that dignity and respect are core values we must all live by.

    44. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, how will you approach fostering an 
environment where victims feel safe to come forward to report these 
crimes?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe a first step in this area is an Air Force 
pilot program, implemented in January, which assigns an attorney to a 
victim of sexual assault who requests one to represent them. I believe 
this could be a very good way to increase accountability. It will 
improve victim confidence, increase the number of victims who are 
willing to report; thereby increasing the number of cases that can be 
investigated and the number of cases in which offenders can be held 
appropriately accountable. If confirmed, I will continue to study the 
impact of this pilot program and look for other initiatives that may be 
helpful.

    45. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, how do intend to increase 
accountability at all levels--not only of the perpetrators, but also of 
their leadership?
    Mr. Hagel. Accountability is key and people who violate the 
standards of acceptable behavior must be held appropriately accountable 
for their actions. I applaud Secretary Panetta's decision last year to 
elevate the initial disposition of the most serious sexual assault 
cases to the level of colonel or Navy captain, or higher. Military 
commanders are essential to making sexual assault prevention and 
response efforts successful.
    I also look forward to learning more about the Department's ongoing 
program to develop Special Victims Capabilities across each of the 
Services, a program legislated in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013, and 
which is under development in the Department in the form of special 
training and standardized procedures for investigators, prosecutors, 
paralegals, and victim witness liaisons. This program's objective is to 
enhance the quality of investigations and accountability in sexual 
assault cases. I fully support it.

                    camp lejeune water contamination
    46. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, historic and recent public statements 
made by the leadership of the U.S. Marine Corps cite that at the time 
of the drinking water contamination period aboard Camp Lejeune, there 
were no regulatory standards governing the organic chemicals which 
fouled the water aboard the base. Yet, recent Department of the Navy 
and Marine Corps documents uncovered by former marines and their 
families affected by the contamination indicate there was indeed a 
Naval regulatory standard in place for total organics in potable water 
as early as 1963 (NAVMED P-5010-5 and BUMED 6240.3B and beginning in 
1972, version C).
    As Secretary of Defense, what steps would you take to ensure the 
Department of the Navy and Marine Corps are truthfully conveying 
pertinent facts, disseminating important developments to the Camp 
Lejeune community, and allowing the community a voice in the matter to 
ensure total transparency regarding this issue?
    Mr. Hagel. The health and well-being of our servicemembers, their 
families, and civilian employees is of the utmost importance to me. If 
I am confirmed, I will be committed to finding answers to the many 
questions surrounding the historic water quality issue at Camp Lejeune, 
including ensuring appropriate oversight of these efforts. I will work 
with the leadership of the Navy and Marine Corps to engage the proper 
experts and review all the facts pertaining to the Bureau of Medicine 
Instruction to which you refer, ensuring that accurate information is 
provided to all who believe they may have been exposed to contaminated 
water at Camp Lejeune. The Department will continue to understand the 
meaning of ongoing scientific efforts and provide comprehensive 
science-based answers to our servicemembers, their families, and 
civilian employees.
    I applaud Congress' efforts to support families through the passage 
of the Honoring America's Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families 
Act of 2012 and I pledge to aggressively support the Department of 
Veterans Affairs efforts to properly implement the legislation.

                                biofuels
    47. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, in August 2011, the Departments of 
the Navy, Agriculture, and Energy signed a Memorandum of Understanding 
(MOU) to invest $510 million to spur production of advanced aviation 
and marine biofuels under the Defense Production Act. The joint-MOU, 
where each Department contributes $170 million, requires substantial 
cost-sharing from private industry of at least a one-to-one match.
    Critics of the MOU claim the Department of Energy (DOE) should be 
the only Government agency involved in the promotion of advanced 
biofuels. While DOE must certainly play an important role, I believe 
the Navy and the Department of Agriculture also need to be involved. 
From my perspective, leveraging the unique capabilities of each 
agency--in partnership with the private sector--exemplifies the type of 
innovative approach needed to solve our country's most vexing 
challenges.
    As the end-user of this fuel, do you believe there are significant 
benefits of having the Navy participate in this initiative?
    Mr. Hagel. I have not reviewed all the details of this initiative; 
however, all of the Military Services require fuel to operate, so all, 
including the Navy, have an interest in promoting military energy 
security and have the potential to benefit from such an initiative. I 
agree that it is important for the Department to leverage the expertise 
of civilian agencies that have the lead or an interest in this area. 
The Defense Department has a long history of harnessing innovation to 
meet defense challenges in ways that can benefit the civilian economy, 
and there is potential for such gains in this case.

    48. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, would you agree that leveraging the 
unique capabilities of these three agencies enhances the prospects for 
programmatic success?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #47.

    49. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, in this budgetary environment, I 
understand that difficult decisions need to be made about funding 
defense programs. However, as the largest single consumer of fuel in 
the world, DOD uses approximately 120 million barrels of oil each year 
and spent over $17 billion in fiscal year 2011 on fuel alone. This 
dependency on a single source of energy jeopardized our military's 
readiness. When the price of oil goes up $1, it costs the Navy an 
additional $30 million and the entire DOD over $100 million. In 2011, 
the Navy was forced to pay an additional $500 million because the price 
of fuel was higher than budgeted. Costs overruns could force the 
military to curtail training and less urgent operations--resulting in 
increased risk to future missions.
    Do you believe that developing a commercially viable biofuels 
industry will help DOD diversify its fuel sources, reduce the risk of 
energy volatility, and ultimately produce cost savings for the Navy?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe it is in the long-term energy security 
interests of the United States to promote a commercially viable 
biofuels industry. A commercially competitive industry could help to 
reduce market volatility and reduce risk. If confirmed, I will look 
into the role biofuels could play in increasing military capabilities 
and lowering costs and risks for the Navy and other military 
departments.

                                lithium
    50. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, DOD has indicated that sustaining 
domestic capacity of lithium metals is critical because of the 
military's reliance on rechargeable lithium batteries in the field and 
the importance of lithium to developing next generation batteries. Do 
you believe it is in our national security interest to secure domestic 
production of lithium metal and reduce our reliance on imports from 
China?
    Mr. Hagel. My understanding is the Department is examining a range 
of options to ensure adequate and sustainable supply of lithium metal. 
If confirmed, I am committed to ensuring the Department has access to 
lithium metals, using all authorities available.

    51. Senator Hagan. Mr. Hagel, will you consider using authorities 
under the Defense Product Act to accomplish this goal?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #50.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator Joe Manchin III
                          downsizing the force
    52. Senator Manchin. Mr. Hagel, if you are confirmed as Secretary 
of Defense, you will oversee the military's largest personnel 
downsizing in a generation. This, I believe, is one of the most 
important tasks facing the next Secretary, especially with the high 
rate of veterans' unemployment. I am very concerned about telling 
servicemembers, many who deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan multiple 
times, their services are no longer needed as the force downsizes. If 
confirmed, what approach would you bring to overseeing this massive 
personnel drawdown?
    Mr. Hagel. The Department must take care of its people, not only 
while they are serving, but it is an obligation that continues through 
the transition to civilian life. We, as a Nation, owe it to them for 
the sacrifices they have made.
    It is my understanding that the Department has worked with the 
Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Labor, the Small Business 
Administration, and the Department of Education to redesign the 
Transition Assistance Program (TAP). The redesigned TAP curriculum 
contains a Department of Labor sponsored employment workshop, a 
Veterans Affairs benefits briefing and registrations, a financial 
planning workshop and Service-specific training to equip members with 
the tools needed to successfully pursue their post military goals. The 
Department is also working with other agencies to meet the mandates of 
the VOW to Hire Heroes Act.
    If confirmed, I will look at the services available for our men and 
women, both those that continue to serve and those that transition to 
civilian life.

                               dod audit
    53. Senator Manchin. Mr. Hagel, in your advance policy questions 
you provided the following statement regarding the Pentagon's audit 
objectives: ``Yes. I support the effort and will maintain the 
Department's commitment to producing audit-ready financial statements 
by the congressional deadline of September 2017, with an audit 
beginning by the end of calendar year 2017.'' Will you do everything in 
your power to speed this process up?
    Mr. Hagel. Improving the Department's financial management 
capability is an important priority and, if confirmed, I will ensure 
that senior leaders throughout the Department are focused on this goal 
and hold them accountable. While I will push for this effort to be 
completed as soon as possible and by the dates we have set, the 
Department must also be careful not to take manual or ``heroic'' steps 
to achieve this goal in an inefficient manner. I understand Congress 
has, in fact, directed DOD not to follow such an approach.

                           military families
    54. Senator Manchin. Mr. Hagel, DOD will face difficult budgetary 
choices in the future. Priorities will need to be evaluated and some 
programs will face cancellation or reduction. After a decade of war it 
is not only our soldiers that feel the stress, but so do their 
families. How will you help ensure programs for military families 
continue to be a high priority for DOD?
    Mr. Hagel. I share the concern of our senior military leaders that 
fiscal constraints will affect the very necessary programs needed to 
support the families of our servicemembers. If confirmed, I will seek 
to prioritize funding for family readiness programs to ensure that the 
quality of support for our military families is not negatively affected 
by budget reductions while also identifying the most effective programs 
and best practices. If confirmed, I will work through a newly formed 
Task Force on Common Services for military families to seek to protect 
funding for family readiness programs.

                        u.s. role in the pacific
    55. Senator Manchin. Mr. Hagel, there has been an increase in 
tension in the East China Sea around the Senkaku Islands in recent 
months. In your view, what is the role of the United States in 
territorial disputes in Asia?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the President's policy that while the United 
States does not take sides over competing claims, the United States 
opposes any and all forms of coercion to resolve disputes or apply 
pressure (including economic measures). In addition, I believe that the 
United States should continue to make clear that we will meet our 
Treaty commitments.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator Jeanne Shaheen
                             sequestration
    56. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, in your responses to the advance 
policy questions, you support Secretary Panetta's assessment of the 
damaging effects that sequestration would have on the entire DOD and 
defense industries. Please describe the negative impact to military 
families should Congress fail to reach an agreement.
    Mr. Hagel. Sequestration will reduce the operations and maintenance 
(O&M) funding that is used to train our troops, to run our bases, and 
to run many of our family support programs. While the Department is 
still finalizing its assessment of specific impacts, I believe the 
these cuts in O&M funding will likely force cuts in our civilian 
workforce that will lead to cuts in the hours, services, and staffing 
available at clinics, family support centers, libraries, and athletic 
facilities. Furthermore, I believe the Department has already concluded 
sequestration will force significant cuts in the maintenance of DOD 
facilities, which directly affects quality of life.
    If confirmed I will make it a priority to minimize the impact of 
sequestration on our military families. Sustaining family support 
programs in these days of extreme budget uncertainties will be 
challenging, but it is an integral part of our military readiness. If 
confirmed, I will seek to minimize funding cuts to family support 
programs to the greatest extent possible.

    57. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, please describe the negative impact 
to our defense industrial base should Congress fail to reach an 
agreement.
    Mr. Hagel. Sequestration would significantly curtail important 
industrial base capabilities and skills which, if lost, would be 
difficult, expensive, and perhaps even impossible to replace. My 
understanding is that the Department has worked diligently to preserve 
those truly unique industrial base assets. Sequestration would render 
these careful efforts largely ineffectual. I believe the Department is 
still assessing the impact on specific weapons programs and service 
support contracts, and that those impacts will vary from case to case, 
but each such program will be cut by about 10 percent.

                           women's healthcare
    58. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, there have been a number of 
positive steps taken over the last year with respect to eliminating 
inequalities facing women in our military. One of which was our effort 
to bring female servicemember reproductive health care in line with 
Federal standards, to ensure women in uniform have the same access to 
care as their civilian counterparts. I was encouraged that we were able 
to change this policy during last year's NDAA, and I look forward to 
its full implementation.
    It is my understanding that the Surgeon's Generals of each of the 
Services will issue guidance to their Departments to ensure that 
doctors and nurses are aware of new medical options available and are 
prepared to advise their patients. I also understand that the Sexual 
Assault Prevention and Response Office will issue guidance to victim 
advocates to ensure they are aware of this policy change and are 
prepared to brief victims on the full range of medical options now 
available. Do you commit to implementing this measure, which is now 
law, to ensure that our service women have the same health care as the 
civilians they protect?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I am committed to ensuring that our female 
servicemembers are afforded the same reproductive health care options 
as women in the civilian population. I will work with the Services to 
guarantee that all medical personnel are aware of the new options and 
that every victim has all resources available. I assure you that I will 
fully implement all laws protecting women servicemembers' reproductive 
rights. My goal is to ensure the health care provided to our 
servicemembers remains world class and contemporary.

          lesbian/bisexual/gay/transgendered military families
    59. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, as the implementation of the repeal 
of Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy continues, concerns have been raised 
about remaining inequalities faced by Lesbian/Bisexual/Gay/
Transgendered (LBGT) military families. We have a case in New Hampshire 
which demonstrates the pain and injustice inflicted by the Defense of 
Marriage Act (DOMA). Charlie Morgan is a chief warrant officer in the 
Army National Guard. She served her country in the Active Army, the 
Reserve and the Guard, and most recently, she was deployed to Kuwait. 
Unfortunately, she has been diagnosed with inoperable breast cancer and 
due to DOMA, her spouse, Karen, is denied any survivor benefits, and 
she is prohibited from health coverage worth well in excess of $10,000 
a year. She also cannot get a base pass that would let her escort her 
4-year-old daughter to medical appointments on base. Though I recognize 
that certain restrictions on monetary benefits apply to LGBT families 
under DOMA, will you commit to ensuring that LGBT families are fully 
incorporated into military communities and social programs?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. As I have said, I know firsthand the profound 
sacrifice our servicemembers and their families make. We must always 
take care of our people. That is why, if confirmed as Secretary of 
Defense, I will do everything possible to the extent permissible under 
current law to provide equal benefits to the families of all our 
servicemembers, as members of our military community.

                               submarines
    60. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, recent operations in Libya, 
Somalia, and around the globe highlight the value submarines continue 
to bring to the fight in both our conventional and covert operations. 
Can you discuss the importance of our undersea warfare capability, 
particularly with respect to the capabilities the Virginia-class 
submarines bring to the Navy?
    Mr. Hagel. U.S. undersea warfare capabilities are unparalleled in 
the world and give us an asymmetric advantage against our adversaries 
in both peace and war. Our U.S. Navy dominates the undersea domain, 
using attack and guided missile submarines for a variety of clandestine 
missions, including intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, 
indications and warning, and special operations forces insertion and 
recovery. Submarines operate covertly in places that overt units 
cannot, providing unequaled capability for intelligence collection.
    Ballistic missile submarines, the most survivable leg of the 
nuclear triad, are vital to the national mission of strategic 
deterrence, and under New START will comprise an increasing percentage 
of our operationally deployed weapons.
    To maintain our undersea dominance, we must continue a vigorous 
submarine building program. The Virginia-class program is the Navy's 
most successful shipbuilding program, consistently providing submarines 
ahead of schedule and under budget.

                     pacific versus atlantic focus
    61. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, obviously, our strategic shift 
towards the Asia-Pacific region prioritizes assets in that area of 
responsibility (AOR). However, as recent operations in Libya and Mali, 
as well as challenges throughout the Mediterranean, the Middle East, 
and North Africa demonstrate, we must maintain the capability to 
quickly respond to contingencies on the Atlantic side as well. 
Considering the uncertain and complex world of threats we face, how 
important is it to maintain flexibility and balance to ensure that our 
shift does not leave us vulnerable on the Atlantic side of the country?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that our military forces need to remain 
flexible, agile, and balanced in order to be ready for challenges 
around the world. I think that DOD recognizes the complexity and 
uncertainty of the global security environment and avoids predicting 
with certainty how the future will unfold. As outlined in the January 
2012 Defense Strategic Guidance, the Department is developing an 
adaptable and technologically-advanced Joint Force capable of 
responding to a wide range of contingencies. Regardless of where U.S. 
military forces may be positioned or stationed, one of the key 
advantages of our military is that we can bring to bear effective 
capabilities virtually anywhere throughout the world to address the 
threats countering our interests.

                                 israel
    62. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, the Senate Armed Services Committee 
(SASC) has been a strong proponent of U.S.-Israeli cooperation on 
missile defense and has provided significant funding for cooperative 
efforts, like the Arrow system, David's Sling, and the Iron Dome. Last 
year, the SASC provided $211 million to help Israel procure additional 
Iron Dome defense systems in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013. What is 
your view on the importance of these cooperative programs?
    Mr. Hagel. I strongly support U.S.-Israel cooperative efforts on 
missile defense, including Iron Dome. U.S. cooperation with Israel, 
enabled by congressional support, has led to the development of one of 
the most comprehensive missile defense architectures in the world. Each 
of the Israeli programs--Iron Dome, David's Sling, and Arrow--fill a 
critical requirement in a multi-layered architecture that has been 
designed to protect the Israeli populace from existing and emerging 
threats.

    63. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, will you commit to continuing these 
programs?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, if confirmed, I will seek to continue these 
programs and to expand them as appropriate. As we saw in Operation 
Pillar of Defense in Gaza, these programs are a lifesaving investment 
in Israel's future and our defense relationship.

                      servicemember reintegration
    64. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, you noted in your response to the 
advance policy questions that you are committed to working with State 
and local governments as well as private and community organizations to 
support reintegration of returning servicemembers, particularly those 
with combat injuries. Several States have established successful 
programs designed to augment reintegration services provided through 
DOD's Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program (YRRP). New Hampshire's 
Deployment Cycle Support program is an example of these efforts that 
combine State and local as well as public and private funds to provide 
comprehensive assistance to military families. What steps can DOD take 
to better support these State and local efforts to ensure their 
continued success?
    Mr. Hagel. I am very familiar with the congressionally-mandated 
YRRP established in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2008 that assists National 
Guard and Reserve members as they transition between their military and 
civilian roles, providing servicemembers and their families with access 
to programs, services, resources, and referrals during all deployment 
phases.
    I am also aware that there are several State programs that go 
beyond YRRP with strong networks of community-based service providers, 
and partnerships with State and local governments that are key in 
ensuring resources are readily available to servicemembers and their 
families when they need them.
    I understand that one of the initiatives of the YRRP Center for 
Excellence includes evaluating State-based outreach and reintegration 
efforts to identify best practices in order to share those initiatives 
nationwide. Additionally, the Center for Excellence is evaluating and 
substantiating various Service curricula at YRRP events and post-event 
survey data to disseminate best practices. They are also creating on-
line toolkits for use across all components at YRRP events.
    If confirmed, I will review the Department's support to YRRP 
efforts within the Department and across the various State programs to 
ensure we are maximizing our combined efforts and sharing best 
practices as much as possible.

                        defense industrial base
    65. Senator Shaheen. Mr. Hagel, it is critical that DOD and the 
Services have an overarching direction and comprehensive policy for 
maintaining the manufacturing and engineering capabilities that are 
necessary to ensure we have production lines for building ships, combat 
vehicles, and even engines and transmissions for our current and future 
weapons systems. What is your view of the status and health of the 
defense-related industrial base, and can you give your assurances that 
you will work to ensure these capabilities remain viable and 
competitive in the near- and long-term?
    Mr. Hagel. I am committed to a healthy industrial base, and I am 
concerned that changes in the defense market may impact that base. If 
confirmed, I will work to ensure critical defense industrial base 
capabilities remain viable and competitive in the near- and long-term. 
The Department is dependent on a strong industrial base for the wide 
range of products and services needed to support the missions of our 
forces, and to provide for the innovation and technical excellence that 
provides technological superiority.
                                 ______
                                 
          Questions Submitted by Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand
                              afghanistan
    66. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, I was a cosponsor of the Afghan 
Women and Girls Security Promotion Act in the 112th Congress, both the 
standalone version and the bill in the form of an amendment that was 
included in the final version of the NDAA. I would like to know what 
actions you will take to follow the amendment's directive and execute 
as robust a report as possible on the efforts made by the U.S. 
Government to ensure the security of Afghan women and girls during and 
after Afghanistan's transition process?
    Mr. Hagel. Promoting and protecting the security of Afghan women 
and girls has been a priority of both the Defense and State Departments 
in Afghanistan. If confirmed, I will continue to work with the State 
Department to monitor progress throughout the transition and provide 
Congress with information that is responsive to the NDAA.

    67. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, the Special Inspector General 
for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has reported that some of the $1 
billion in fuel purchases from Russia and Turkmenistan were blended 
with Iranian oil. What measures are going to be put into place to 
ensure that we are not violating our own sanctions on Iran?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the SIGAR reported that there may be Iranian 
oil in some products we have purchased. I understand that our contracts 
for fuel in Afghanistan, including contracts for fuel purchased in 
Russia and Turkmenistan, require certifications that Iran was not a 
source of the oil. If I am confirmed, I will ensure that we have 
appropriate processes in place to preclude the purchase of fuel that 
may have come from Iran and to enforce our own sanctions against Iran.

                         women in the military
    68. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, Secretary Panetta recently 
lifted the ban on women serving in direct combat roles. I applaud that 
decision and am happy to hear that you plan to continue its 
implementation, if confirmed. The military you served in with such 
distinction in many ways looks very different than the military of 
today. Today, women make up nearly 15 percent of the Armed Forces. More 
than 283,000 women have been deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. More 
than 800 women have been wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan, and more than 
140 women have died. Two women have earned Silver Star medals. Why do 
we need to wait until 2016 for the Services to complete their 
assessment when so many women are already serving on the front lines?
    Mr. Hagel. As I've said, I strongly support Secretary Panetta's 
decision to lift the ban on women serving in combat roles. While there 
are women serving on the front lines, the rescission of the Direct 
Combat Rule and Assignment Policy requires the Services to review the 
requirements and standards for all combat positions. It is my 
understanding that this process takes, at a minimum, 2 years in order 
to review tasks, develop testing, and validate the tests which will 
result in gender neutral standards.

    69. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, I understand and appreciate that 
you support the announcement made last week regarding the policy of 
opening combat roles to women. I wholeheartedly support this overdue 
change in policy as women already have been fighting and dying on the 
frontline. I just as strongly believe that military standards should 
not be lowered for women seeking these roles and we will see 
extraordinary women meeting those standards and strengthening our 
national security. I am concerned, however, about the potential for the 
goal posts being moved back, or arbitrary standards set, which would in 
effect keep combat roles closed to qualified women. How will you ensure 
this policy is implemented as intended and as rapidly as feasible?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the military and civilian leadership are 
committed to implementing the rescission as quickly as possible and, if 
confirmed, I assure I will work to have it implemented expeditiously. I 
will ensure that all standards reflect legitimate requirements for 
combat roles. In short, if a female soldier has the full skills and 
capabilities required to perform in a position, I will make sure she 
does.

    70. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, we know that women are already 
participating, unofficially, with many combat units and special 
operations units. With the lifting of the combat exclusion ban, what 
will happen to the women already serving with ground combat troops?
    Mr. Hagel. It's my understanding that women who served or are 
serving in units under an exception to the ground combat exclusion do 
so in an official capacity. It's also my understanding that women 
currently serving with ground combat troops will continue to serve with 
ground combat troops.

    71. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, will their combat service now be 
recognized as such?
    Mr. Hagel. It's my understanding that women's service in combat is 
already being recognized. If confirmed, I expect we will continue to 
recognize their service and achievements based on the contributions 
they make toward mission accomplishment.

    72. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, will they be eligible to compete 
now for combat arms leadership positions?
    Mr. Hagel. On January 24, 2013, Secretary Panetta rescinded the 
1994 Direct Ground Combat Definition and Assignment Rule and directed 
the integration of women into previously closed positions by January 1, 
2016. If confirmed, I will continue implementation of that new policy. 
Within this policy I expect women will be able to compete for 
leadership positions where they are qualified and meet the standards.

    73. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, sexual assault is an appalling 
problem in our military that continues to threaten the military's core 
value of protecting all members of the Armed Forces. It has been 
speculated that lifting the direct ground combat exclusion for women 
will help mitigate the sexual assault problems in our military by 
eliminating gender classes in the military. Do you agree with this 
theory, and if so, will you use it as leverage to ensure combat roles 
are opened to women swiftly and equally across the Services?
    Mr. Hagel. I have not had sufficient time to study this particular 
theory. As I have previously stated, sexual assault has no place in our 
military or anywhere in our society and I will work tirelessly to 
resolve that issue holding all commanders fully accountable.

    74. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, lifting the combat exclusion ban 
has raised the question of whether women should be required to register 
for the Selective Service. Selective Service requirements are 
determined by law; would you support Congress' decision to include 
women in the mandatory registry for Selective Service at age 18?
    Mr. Hagel. This is an issue that concerns DOD, although it is not 
responsible for administering the Selective Service System. If 
confirmed, I will look forward to participating in any interagency 
discussion of the merits of extending selective service registration to 
women.

    75. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, we have been told many times 
that commanders will be held responsible if there is a climate in their 
units that contributes to sexual assault or harassment. But I am 
concerned that measurable mechanisms for holding leaders accountable in 
addressing sexual violence issues have not been devised. DOD needs to 
develop a process for more directly holding leaders accountable for 
enforcing DOD's sexual abuse and harassment policies. The Defense 
Advisory Committee on Women in the Services even recommends that 
effectiveness in combating sexual harassment and assault should be a 
part of individual performance evaluations of all servicemembers and 
not just leaders. Accountability seems to be lacking in many respects. 
Case in point: Right now there appears to be no one person assigned to 
oversee the implementation of Secretary Panetta's directives on sexual 
assault prevention and response.
    When it comes to issues of sexual violence in the military, what do 
you believe is the best mechanism for evaluating leaders?
    Mr. Hagel. The men and women who are serving their country face 
many challenges both on and off the battlefield. They should never have 
to fear the threat of sexual assault from a fellow soldier or superior.
    Accountability is always the most important tool for leader 
evaluation. One of the most effective mechanisms across all Services is 
the command climate assessment. This tool provides timely feedback as a 
modality to determine if leaders have reinforced a culture of mutual 
respect and created an atmosphere that reinforces that sexual assault 
has no place within our ranks. The results from the assessment are key 
indicators whether leaders are taking responsibility for good order, 
morale, and discipline.

    76. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that 
effectiveness in combating sexual harassment and assault should be part 
of individual performance evaluations for commanders?
    Mr. Hagel. Accountability is always the most important tool for 
leader evaluation. One of the most effective mechanisms across all 
Services is the command climate assessment. This tool provides timely 
feedback as a modality to determine if leaders have reinforced a 
culture of mutual respect and created an atmosphere that reinforces 
that sexual assault has no place within our ranks. The results from the 
assessment are key indicators whether leaders are taking responsibility 
for good order, morale, and discipline.

    77. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, in your opinion, what 
consequences should follow if a commander is found to be unresponsive 
or ineffective on this issue?
    Mr. Hagel. I will hold all commanders responsible for this issue.
    In order to successfully address this issue, I will continue to 
advance the positive steps taken by Secretary Panetta to change the 
policies and the culture that has discouraged victims from speaking out 
and trusting that there are resources in place to support and protect 
them.
    Among the initiatives that have already been taken by this 
administration, I feel strongly about efforts to raise the awareness of 
this issue and elevate its importance to the Department, including 
elevating disposition authority for the most serious cases, requiring 
commanders to conduct annual organizational climate assessments, and 
enhancing training programs for sexual assault prevention.
    If confirmed, I will work closely with the Joint Chiefs of Staff to 
ensure that all of our commanders are responsive and establish 
appropriate repercussions for those commanders who do not fully support 
this goal.

                            women's security
    78. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, on December 19, 2011, the United 
States released its new National Action Plan (NAP) on U.N. Security 
Council Resolution 1325 on Women Peace and Security (WPS). The plan 
released by the administration is the first ever U.S. national action 
plan and Executive Order to implement these goals to establish women as 
influential and active agents in the prevention and resolution of 
conflicts. On August 10, 2012, the United States released the first-
ever U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-based Violence 
Globally, and President Obama signed an accompanying Executive Order 
directing all relevant agencies to implement the Strategy. The Strategy 
underscores the U.S. Government's commitment to preventing and 
responding to gender-based violence.
    We know that all too often violence against women is used as a tool 
of war, yet U.N. peacekeepers and regional forces are under-trained and 
under-equipped in addressing violence against women. What actions will 
you take to implement this Executive Order?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that, in the first year of implementation, 
the Department made noteworthy progress on the NAP for WPS objectives, 
both internally and with a range of foreign defense partners. First and 
foremost was Secretary Panetta's decision to rescind the restriction on 
women in direct combat, a decision I applaud. Externally, in bilateral 
and multilateral engagements, I am told combatant commands and our 
Regional Centers are focused on building the capacity of partner 
militaries to promote and strengthen gender equality.
    I understand that the Department is developing a DOD Instruction to 
institutionalize the NAP's priorities. If confirmed, I would continue 
this progress in implementing the NAP and ensure the Department 
continues to lead by example on WPS issues.

    79. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, are there assets, such as excess 
defense articles, that the United States can contribute to peacekeeping 
forces, such as those in the Congo, in order to specifically help women 
facing significant and constant threats of sexual violence?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I plan to fully support the Department's 
efforts to implement the U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to 
Gender-based Violence Globally and associated Executive Order. In this 
context, training of peacekeepers is critical and I believe it is 
important that DOD peacekeeping training continue to include human 
rights training and targeted instruction on prevention of and response 
to sexual and gender based violence. If confirmed, I will also continue 
to leverage Department authority to provide excess defense articles to 
equip peacekeeping contingents, where appropriate.

                                 cyber
    80. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, in your responses to the advance 
policy questions, you have said that ``recruiting, training, and 
retaining military and civilian personnel needed for cyber operations 
will be a challenge''. One noted expert recently told the press that of 
the 10,000 necessary top cyber personnel, DOD has or can recruit only 
2,000.
    Why don't we begin an aggressive program of recruiting National 
Guard and Reserve cyber experts--a cyber corps--which would leverage 
the training and hiring of the private tech sector? The additional 
benefit from using the Guard is their ability to operate both in the 
military and Homeland defense space so that they can address the 
spectrum of threats to our national interests.
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that the National Guard and Reserve are a 
tremendous resource of talent and of surge capacity for DOD, and these 
skilled personnel can contribute greatly to the cyber mission. We are 
already using Guard and Reserve personnel in this mission area. It will 
not only be critical to recruit the right talent, but we must take a 
strategic approach to leveraging our National Guard and Reserve Forces 
as part of our overall structure. If confirmed, I will ensure that we 
appropriately draw upon a broad pool of our Nation's cyber experts in 
support of our critical cyber mission.

    81. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, I also understand that the 
pipeline of cyber personnel has to start in early education in order to 
interest and educate the right number of future cyber warriors. Why 
don't we make Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) 
aptitude and interest a significant focus of our Reserve Officers' 
Training Corps (ROTC) selection?
    Mr. Hagel. The Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) is vital to 
training the exceptional officers upon which our military relies, 
including in cyber skill sets. I believe that we should explore many 
approaches to build the critical technical skills DOD needs, and this 
should include exploring STEM related incentives in our ROTC program.

                         new york installations
    82. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, I represent New York, home to 
our Nation's number one terrorist target. In the NDAA for Fiscal Year 
2013, I worked to ensure the second WMD civil support teams for both 
New York and Florida were authorized, and that funds have been 
appropriated. Both of these units are fully trained and ready to deploy 
in the event of a terrorist attack, yet DOD and the National Guard 
Bureau are trying to disestablish our second teams. While I recognize 
the need for cost savings, these teams cost so little and yet provide 
so much to our country. Given the importance of these teams to our 
national security, do I have your commitment to follow clear 
congressional direction, which has authorized and fully funded these 
teams?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that WMD civil support teams are vital to our 
national security. I am not familiar with the funding for these teams, 
but I will look into this matter if confirmed.

    83. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, I understand that the Army must 
cut its forces, but it is taking only two of its eight Brigade Combat 
Teams (BCT) slated for reduction out of Europe, and the rest from 
Continental United States (CONUS). Will you consider further cuts 
outside the CONUS (OCONUS), perhaps using rotational units?
    Mr. Hagel. The additional BCT reductions must be made consistent 
with our global strategy and treaty obligations. The three remaining 
BCTs not stationed in the United States, one in Korea and two in 
Europe, provide vital forward presence, partnership opportunities, 
deterrence, and rapid response. I will certainly work with my staff and 
the Secretary of the Army and Chief of Staff of the Army to see what 
other options may be feasible and affordable while still providing the 
requisite reassurance to our allies.

    84. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, what metrics and methodology 
will DOD use in approaching reductions in overseas personnel and 
infrastructure, while concurrently taking actions which reduce force 
structure in the United States?
    Mr. Hagel. The Department will seek to balance posture reductions 
in a way that aligns with our national strategic interests. As we 
consider options, we will balance our strategic and operational 
priorities against the need to reduce costs.

    85. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, the Army has reiterated the 
importance of rotary wing aviation in Iraq and Afghanistan as a 
critical asset to reducing the amount of casualties during ground 
convoys because of improvised explosive devices (IED). As the Army 
downsizes, do you see the number of Combat Aviation Brigades decreasing 
as well?
    Mr. Hagel. As it downsizes, the Army must maintain the proper 
balance amongst all of its capabilities--Ground Combat capabilities, 
Combat Support capabilities, Sustainment and Logistics capabilities, 
and Institutional capabilities. Army Aviation must be part of this 
balance. I don't know to what extent Aviation will be affected, but I 
will review with the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Staff of 
the Army their plans for the Army drawdown and ensure that I and my 
staff continue to be comfortable with the Army's plan.

    86. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, we've seen from Air Force 2013 
Force Structure proposal, a disconcerting strategy which shifts more 
flying missions and iron to the Active component, while placing the Air 
Guard with fewer assets. The Guard getting unmanned missions is a 
welcome development, but the reduced manning requirements and the 
ability of the Air Guard to provide support to Governors with fewer 
numbers of critical assets, such as C-130s, remains a concern. It may 
also place a chill on Air Guard recruiting given the decreasing 
opportunities for pilots. What is your strategy to maintain a strong 
balance in flying missions and assets for the Air Guard over the next 4 
years and beyond?
    Mr. Hagel. Since its inception, the Air Force has relied on the 
Total Force--made up of the Active, Reserve, and Air Guard components. 
Over the past 2 decades, the Air Force has become a more integrated 
force, both operationally and organizationally, as all three 
components--Active, Reserve, and Air Guard--have trained, deployed, and 
conducted the full range of missions together. I understand the Air 
Force continually reevaluates the mix between Active and Reserve 
components through an institutionalized process that includes 
representatives from all three components. If confirmed, I intend to 
work with Air Force leadership to understand and evaluate this process 
myself.

    87. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, how will you assure that the Air 
National Guard has a greater voice in decisionmaking, rather than 
simply being handed decisions from the Air Force?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the work currently under way between the 
Department and the Council of Governors to develop a mutually agreed 
upon consultative process will ensure that the concerns of States are 
taken into consideration in future National Guard force structure, 
basing and budgeting decisions. I intend to continue with this effort 
and am committed to working closely with the Council of Governors.

    88. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, with the downsizing of the 
military, and last year's request from the administration for Base 
Closure and Realignment (BRAC) authorization, I anticipate that we will 
be discussing a new round of domestic base closings in this year's 
posture hearings. How will the metrics rolled out by the Air Force and 
Army respectively, in the last year and a half, inform any BRAC 
decisions?
    Mr. Hagel. It is my understanding that BRAC recommendations must 
result from a process that meets the requirements of the specific BRAC 
legislation. Therefore, metrics developed outside the BRAC statutory 
process can be used only if authorized in the legislation.

    89. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, you have said that you view 
cyber threats as one of the top security threats to the United States. 
Yet last year the Air Force cut its cyber research budget, and in the 
coming year, there is a plan to make the research budget pay for the 
operating costs at the Air Force Research Lab in Rome, New York. I am 
very concerned that such steps point to a hollowing out of our cyber 
preparedness, rather than taking the threat seriously. I hope to work 
with you to reverse this trend. Even in a budget scarce environment, 
cyber research pays tremendous dividends. Can I count on your support 
for increased cybersecurity research?
    Mr. Hagel. In today's complex global environment, cyber threats 
pose an increasingly serious challenge to national security. DOD 
organizations, including the Air Force Research Lab, provide for the 
development of vital capabilities needed for both today's warfighter 
and for the future strategic environment. If confirmed, I will work 
with Congress and the Services to ensure that DOD continues to assess 
and invest in critical cybersecurity research activities.

          coordination with the department of veterans affairs
    90. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, I am concerned about the 
transition our warriors face as they leave the DOD and enter the 
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). While there have been improvements 
in the last few years, I am concerned there is still a gap. I am 
especially concerned about the issues our female warriors face as they 
make this transition, especially those who have been sexually assaulted 
while serving. I want to ensure they are getting the information, care, 
and assistance they need while not being revictimized by the system.
    If confirmed, what are your plans for increasing coordination with 
the VA to ensure our troops, especially women, are getting the 
important transition information and assistance they need so that no 
one falls through the cracks?
    Mr. Hagel. I am committed to ensuring every servicemember receives 
the training, education, and credentials he or she needs to 
successfully transition to the civilian workforce. I believe we must 
embed servicemembers' preparation for transition throughout their 
military lifecycle. I understand that the Department has redesigned the 
Transition Assistance Program (TAP) to ensure all servicemembers are 
``career ready'' upon separation. The redesigned TAP complies with the 
VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 that mandates all servicemembers 
separating from title 10 Active Duty (including reservists and 
guardsmen) participate in the program to ensure they are better 
prepared when leaving the military for civilian life.
    If confirmed, I will engage Department of Veterans Affairs 
Secretary Eric Shinseki in a specific dialogue on the unique issues 
facing the transition of our female servicemembers. I will also 
continue the practice of holding regular Secretarial-level meetings and 
will closely monitor the progress of the many important joint 
initiatives between the two Departments.

                            directed energy
    91. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, the Center for Strategic and 
Budgetary Assessments recommended last year a much greater investment 
into directed energy weapons. While DOD has already spent billions of 
dollars over several decades on science and technology efforts related 
to directed energy, several recent demonstrations by the Navy using 
solid state lasers on surface ships indicate that we may be reaching 
the point where as a Nation we can begin to realize a return on the 
substantial investment and transition this capability from science and 
technology to development as a weapon system. I understand that 
shipboard directed energy weapons could provide an affordable solution 
to significant capability challenges associated with sustaining our 
forward presence in strategically critical areas such as the South 
China Seas, the Sea of Japan, and the Straits of Hormuz. What is your 
view of current DOD efforts to weaponize directed energy technologies?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that the Department has embarked on a 
deliberate path to develop the technologies to weaponize Directed 
Energy. If confirmed, I will continue to push for directed energy and 
other emerging technologies through robust research and development to 
continuously improve the capabilities we will field for our forces.

    92. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, should the Navy formally 
consider initiating a development program of record for high energy 
solid state lasers to improve the affordability and capability of our 
surface ships?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that the Navy has and will continue to 
assess the solid state laser research and development efforts to 
determine transition opportunities given the remaining technical risk, 
costs and capability limitations that must be addressed prior to 
establishing a program of record.

    93. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, should such a program, if 
undertaken, include contributions from willing and technically capable 
allies?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

                               asia pivot
    94. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, the President had announced an 
Asia pivot, and between North Korea's missile threats and China's 
increased aggressiveness with respect to its neighbors, we have a 
number of challenges to react to. But at a time of declining budgets, 
how would you balance this pivot against the continuing concerns in the 
Middle East and the growing threat in Africa?
    Mr. Hagel. As described in the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance, the 
Department is rebalancing toward the Asia-Pacific while maintaining 
focus on the Middle-East. I think that the significant U.S. military 
presence and activities in Asia are a clear demonstration of the 
enduring U.S. commitment to the region and to addressing current and 
emerging challenges in the Asia-Pacific. Moreover, if confirmed as 
Secretary, I would take every step to maintain the ability of America 
to conduct successful combat operations in more than one region at a 
time, ensuring that we have the ability to meet threats around the 
world, as in the Middle East and North Africa, when they arise. Our 
global posture, engagement with allies and partners, and investment in 
flexible defense architectures for high-demand capabilities, such as 
ballistic missile defense, are of great importance.

    95. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, how would this impact decisions 
over weapon systems and force structure?
    Mr. Hagel. While rebalancing, it will be important for the 
Department to protect new capabilities and investments to respond to 
the changing character of warfare; to preserve lessons, capabilities, 
and expertise built over the past 10 years; and to maintain a 
technological edge to meet future challenges.

                      cutting forces/hollow force
    96. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, you have stated that a hollow 
force is one that has been rendered incapable of performing the mission 
that we expect it to conduct. With a hollow force, units do not have 
the resources, personnel, equipment, and training necessary to make 
them capable or ready to execute the defense strategies that secure our 
country. As the military draws down after a decade of war, what 
strategic approach would you implement to ensure we retain the 
appropriate balance of training, readiness, and modernization to 
prevent the force from becoming hollow?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that last year the President approved the 
Department's Strategic Guidance which provided priorities as well as 
force sizing direction. This was designed to ensure the Department 
could meet the missions we foresee and respond to the unexpected in a 
balanced way. However, any dramatic changes to the resources of the 
Department, such as with sequestration, would force military and 
civilian leaders to reevaluate that strategy.

    97. Senator Gillibrand. Mr. Hagel, as conventional warfare becomes 
more technology-based, how do you believe that we should retain talent, 
especially in the fields of information technology and cyber warfare 
when the technology sector is able to provide pay and benefits that far 
exceed what the Government can offer?
    Mr. Hagel. Maintaining personnel critical technical skills will be 
an increasingly important challenge for DOD. Although the private 
sector may be able to offer better pay and benefits in some cases, my 
experience with DOD personnel has shown me again and again not only 
their talent but their commitment to their national security mission. 
In order to recruit and retain these talented individuals in 
information technology and cyberspace, I will use every tool I have 
afforded by OPM. In addition to many opportunities that the private 
sector cannot offer, DOD can focus on new ways to recruit, train, and 
retain talented cyber professionals. These include scholarships, 
partnerships, ensuring that technical people stay in mission essential 
technical jobs, and working creatively with the National Guard and 
Reserve components. If confirmed, I will work with DOD and 
congressional leaders to address this challenge.
                                 ______
                                 
   Question Submitted by Senators Kirsten E. Gillibrand and Richard 
                               Blumenthal
                                 autism
    98. Senator Gillibrand and Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, we have 
worked very hard this year to pass a bipartisan, bicameral provision 
funding autism services under TRICARE. Unfortunately we only funded a 
1-year project. We understand that you were also supportive of early 
intervention and treatment of autism. We'd like to work with you to 
find a way to permanently fund Tricare's coverage of autism services.
    Mr. Hagel. As I understand it, the TRICARE program provides medical 
benefits under the basic program and provides non-medical support 
benefits (including respite care) to Active Duty Families under the 
Extended Health Care Option (ECHO). TRICARE has always covered medical 
benefits such as speech and physical therapy, to individuals with an 
Autism diagnosis under the medical benefit. In addition, TRICARE has 
implemented coverage of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) as a medical 
benefit, and is reviewing additional provider treatment options for 
medical care. This medical care will be provided by authorized TRICARE 
providers who are licensed or certified to provide ABA therapy. If I am 
confirmed, I look forward to working with you on this important issue 
that affects so many families.
                                 ______
                                 
           Questions Submitted by Senator Richard Blumenthal
                          vietnam era veterans
    99. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, an estimated 70,000 veterans who 
served in the Vietnam war suffered from undiagnosed at the time Post 
Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during their service and were given 
less-than-honorable discharges. I understand that less than 2 percent 
of those who have applied for discharge upgrades have been successful 
before the Army's records correction boards. In contrast, today's 
military personnel are properly and, if appropriate, given a medical 
discharge, which entitles them to disability compensation, medical 
care, and support. If confirmed, will you review the decisions and 
guidance of the Army records correction boards with regards to the 
denial of Vietnam veterans' requests for discharge upgrades?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I understand that the Boards for the Correction of 
Military Records all operate under procedures approved by the Secretary 
of Defense and if confirmed, I will ensure that those procedures 
protect all veterans suffering from PTSD.

                     military-to-military relations
    100. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, as a component of the Northern 
Distribution Network (NDN), Azerbaijan provides ground and naval 
transit for roughly 40 percent of the International Security Assistance 
Force (ISAF) coalition's supplies bound for Afghanistan. Azerbaijan has 
extended important over-flight clearance, landing, and refueling 
operations for U.S. and NATO flights to support ISAF. In 2012, more 
than 150 aeromedical evacuation flights of U.S. Air Mobility Command 
were flown over Azerbaijan, rushing more than 2,200 patients to a 
higher level of medical care. How do you assess current U.S.-Azerbaijan 
military-to-military relations and what will be your policy to expand 
this strategic partnership?
    Mr. Hagel. My assessment is that the U.S.-Azerbaijan defense 
relationship is strong--but still has room to grow. If confirmed, I 
will build on existing cooperation and ensure DOD continues to engage 
in regular consultations at high levels with Azerbaijani counterparts 
to identify areas where we can strengthen our cooperation and 
partnership. That growth will be based on shared interests and 
willingness to cooperate, available resources, and capacity to absorb 
new programs. I will also continue our engagement with Azerbaijan aimed 
at supporting Azerbaijan's defense reforms, its ability to interoperate 
with NATO, to deploy forces in support of coalition operations, and its 
capacity to address terrorism and other transnational threats and 
secure its maritime borders and energy infrastructure. I would look for 
the United States to be Azerbaijan's partner of choice and help 
Azerbaijan's defense establishment contribute to regional security and 
stability.

    101. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, in September 2012, Secretary of 
Defense Leon Panetta invited the Chinese PLA to observe the Rim of the 
Pacific (RIMPAC) military exercise that will take place in 2014. In 
2012, RIMPAC involved participants from more than 20 countries. If 
confirmed, would you consider extending a similar invitation to observe 
RIMPAC to Taiwan?
    Mr. Hagel. The United States is firm in its commitment to Taiwan's 
self-defense needs under the Taiwan Relations Act. That relationship 
includes defense exchanges and other interactions consistent with our 
unofficial relationship and as provided for in the Taiwan Relations 
Act. If confirmed, I will work to identify appropriate exchanges and 
interactions to assist Taiwan's self-defense capabilities, and 
contribute to peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

    102. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed as Secretary of 
Defense, what additional steps would you take to strengthen our 
military-to-military relationship with Israel?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will consider what additional steps 
could further strengthen our military relationship with Israel, 
including but not limited to missile defense, intelligence sharing, 
counterterrorism, and maritime security. I know that over the past 4 
years the administration has taken unprecedented steps to expand our 
cooperation with Israel. Today, with congressional support, the United 
States provides Israel over $3 billion annually in Foreign Military 
Financing (FMF), which is the backbone of our commitment to Israel's 
defense. This financial support is complemented by extensive military-
to-military cooperation, including joint exercises. If confirmed, I 
will seek to ensure that we build on this cooperation and expand it 
into new areas as the United States and Israel address emerging threats 
at this time of historic change in the Middle East. I believe we have a 
tremendous opportunity for further expansion of our missile defense 
efforts as well as cooperation in areas like space and cyberspace.
    The foundation for successful cooperation is the close personal 
relationships U.S. military and defense civilian leaders have with 
Israeli military and defense leadership. Secretary Gates and Secretary 
Panetta, as well as the Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have all 
developed very close relationships with their counterparts. Continuing 
with this tradition will be one of my highest priorities if I am 
confirmed. This will be vital to ensuring that we understand Israel's 
defense requirements, and to finding ways to address mutual threats 
that meet our common interests.

    103. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, what role does Israel's 
participation in the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program have in 
maintaining Israel's qualitative military edge in the region?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that the JSF will be a core component of 
Israel's qualitative military edge (QME). Israel's QME is predicated 
upon its ability to defend itself, by itself, from any and all threats 
in the region--whether the threat comes from state or non-state actors 
or a coalition of states. Air superiority is one of the most important 
components to Israel's QME, and the unique capabilities of the JSF will 
ensure Israeli air superiority for decades. Israel will be the only 
nation in the region with a fifth generation fighter aircraft, and 
Israel's JSF will be tailored to meet its specific security 
requirements.

                     reserve component mobilization
    104. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, following the September 11, 
2001, terrorist attacks against the United States, President Bush 
issued a partial mobilization of the Reserve components, authorizing 
the involuntary mobilization of up to 1 million members of the National 
Guard and Reserves at any one time for repeated service of up to 2 
years. National Guard units like the 143rd Military Police Company out 
of West Hartford and the 1048th Transportation Company out of Stratford 
have served in Afghanistan for repeated deployments. I know the 
sustainability of an operational reserve is something that concerns 
you. In 2007, you introduced an amendment limiting the deployment of 
servicemembers serving in Iraq to 12 months. While the National Guard 
and Reserve have served with distinction, the operational reserve has 
without question had impacts that need to be addressed here at home. 
What is your vision for maintaining readiness levels within the Reserve 
component without continued Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) 
funding post-2014?
    Mr. Hagel. I appreciate Congress' efforts in the NDAA for Fiscal 
Year 2012 to increase authorities to fully use the Reserves in a 
planned and programmed manner. Without OCO, the required Reserve 
component readiness funding would need to be included in the 
Department's annual baseline budget to align resources with the 
Department's long-term mission needs.

    105. Senator Blumenthal. Mr. Hagel, what mobilization authority is 
appropriate to use as we continue our counterterrorism efforts with the 
Reserve component?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, and in light of the new strategy, I will 
consider the question of additional mobilization authorities, but at 
the present time I believe that appropriate policies and procedures are 
in place and current laws are adequate.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator Mazie K. Hirono
                           u.s.-pacific ties
    106. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, given the increasingly complex 
interrelationships of military, economic, political and diplomatic 
policies relevant to regional security issues, what is your view on the 
role for DOD institutes like Hawaii's Asia-Pacific Center for Security 
Studies (APCSS) in advancing some of the goals of the rebalance to the 
Pacific and also in accomplishing a U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) 
objective of developing professional and personal ties among with our 
allies throughout the region? APCSS brings together military and 
civilian representatives of the United States and Asia-Pacific nations 
to address regional and global security issues through its 
comprehensive program of executive education and conferences.
    Mr. Hagel. APCSS contributes to advancing America's Pacific 
rebalance by enhancing professional and personal ties with partners 
throughout the region, strengthening defense institutional capacity, 
promoting critical thinking on regional security issues, and providing 
a venue for communication and exchange of ideas involving military and 
civilian participants. I agree that APCSS has a unique convening 
ability to bring together influential civilian and military 
decisionmakers from governments in the region with business and civil 
society leaders.

    107. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, in your response to an advance 
policy question concerning additional steps the United States should 
take to defend against the North Korean ballistic missile threat, you 
state that the ``United States should also seek to enhance bilateral 
and trilateral missile defense cooperation with our ROK [Republic of 
Korea] and Japanese allies particularly in the area of information 
sharing.'' Last year, the Korean public's opposition, inflamed by 
heightened tensions with Japan, largely led to the failure of the ROK 
Government to sign an agreement with Japan that would allow the two 
countries to exchange key military intelligence. If confirmed, what 
would you do to enhance bilateral and trilateral defense cooperation 
with these allies?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will continue to explore ways to deepen 
our alliance cooperation with Japan and South Korea, emphasize and 
encourage trilateral cooperation, and, where possible, support efforts 
to strengthen ties between the two countries. I understand there are 
significant cooperative efforts already underway, including the Defense 
Trilateral Talks, which recently were conducted at the assistant 
Secretary level in Tokyo, and I would continue these initiatives, if 
confirmed. Deeper trilateral cooperation enhances our Alliance 
capabilities, sends a powerful message to the region, and serves to 
reinforce deterrence against possible aggression.

    108. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, in your response to the advance 
policy question on the status of the U.S.-China relationship, you 
recognize the fact that ``China is rapidly modernizing its military and 
increasingly asserting claims to territory''. If confirmed, how should 
the United States respond to China's increasingly aggressive actions 
over the Senkaku Islands and what steps will you take to assure our 
Japanese allies of America's commitments to defend Japanese territory 
under Article V of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security.
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will continue our longstanding 
commitments to all of our Treaty allies, including Japan. My 
understanding is that the administration has made clear that while the 
United States takes no position on the sovereignty of the Senkaku 
Islands, our Treaty commitments apply to all territories under the 
administration of Japan. I would support continuing this policy and 
communicate it clearly to all parties involved in this issue. If 
confirmed, I also would continue U.S. efforts to promote the peaceful 
handling of the Senkaku Island dispute by all parties while at the same 
time ensuring that the United States maintains the ability to fulfill 
all of its security commitments.

    109. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, in 2011, while I was attending the 
Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Hawaii, Secretary of 
State Hillary Clinton appeared at the East-West Center in Honolulu and 
gave an address titled ``America's Pacific Century''. In her remarks, 
she stated that the United States has ``a strong relationship with 
Taiwan, an important security and economic partner . . . .'' In what 
specific ways will you build on this existing foundation and further 
enhance this important relationship as Secretary of Defense?
    Mr. Hagel. The United States is firm in its commitment to Taiwan's 
self-defense needs under the Taiwan Relations Act. This could include 
the provision of defense articles and services, consistent with the 
Taiwan Relations Act, as well as training opportunities designed to 
improve Taiwan's self-defense capabilities.

    110. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, what is your current assessment of 
our relationships with Japan, South Korea, Australia, the Philippines, 
and Taiwan? Please describe your goals should you be confirmed as 
Secretary of Defense for each of these relationships.
    Mr. Hagel. My understanding is that our relationships with these 
allies and partners remain extraordinarily strong, and, if confirmed, I 
would ensure that we continue to prioritize our critical alliances and 
partnerships in the Asia-Pacific region.
    Japan is the linchpin of our presence in Asia. Japan is an 
increasingly critical partner in missile defense, humanitarian 
assistance and disaster relief, maritime security, and other important 
areas. If confirmed, I would continue the work of my predecessors to 
broaden and deepen this critical alliance to ensure that it is capable 
of responding to the security challenges of the 21st century.
    The United States has a similarly robust relationship with the 
Republic of Korea (ROK). My understanding is that we have a 
comprehensive agenda aimed at facilitating the smooth transfer of 
wartime operational control in 2015, and ensuring the ROK Government 
has the capabilities necessary to defend the peninsula. If confirmed, I 
would continue these important efforts, and would also continue to 
stress the importance of trilateral ties between Japan, the ROK, and 
the United States.
    The U.S.-Australia alliance is very strong, reflecting the enduring 
bonds forged through the sacrifices of United States and Australian 
forces in every major conflict of the last 100 years. The joint U.S.-
Australia force posture initiatives in northern Australia reflect a 
reality we all recognize: security and prosperity of our two great 
nations is inextricably linked to the security and prosperity of the 
Asia-Pacific region. If confirmed, my goal would be to continue to 
invest in this critical relationship.
    I understand that our alliance with the Philippines has matured 
substantially during the Obama and Aquino administrations. Over the 
past few years, our defense relationship has developed in many 
important dimensions. If confirmed, I would continue this trend by 
exploring options for increased rotational presence for U.S. forces in 
the Philippines while continuing to support the Philippines' 
development of a minimum credible defense capability.
    The Taiwan Relations Act provides that the United States ``will 
make available to Taiwan such defense articles and defense services in 
such quantity as may be necessary to enable Taiwan to maintain a 
sufficient self-defense capability.'' That policy has contributed to 
peace and stability in the region for over 30 years and is consistent 
with longstanding U.S. policy, which calls for a peaceful resolution of 
the Taiwan issue in a manner acceptable to the people on both sides of 
the Taiwan Strait. If confirmed, I would work closely with Congress, 
the Commander of U.S. Pacific Command, and the Department's interagency 
partners to ensure the continued effective implementation of all of the 
relevant provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act.

                            women in combat
    111. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, in light of DOD's recent 
announcement with regard to the role of women in combat, I'd like to 
ask about the priority you will give to developing implementation plans 
to move forward with the U.S. NAP on WPS released by the White House in 
December 2011. It is my understanding that the Department of State and 
USAID have released implementation plans building on the NAP.
    If the White House plan envisions an active role in this regard by 
DOD, I would be interested in your vision for moving forward in this 
regard.
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that, in the first year of implementation, 
the Department made noteworthy progress on the NAP for WPS objectives 
both internally and with a range of foreign defense partners. First and 
foremost was Secretary Panetta's decision to rescind the restriction on 
women in direct combat, a decision I applaud. Externally, in bilateral 
and multilateral engagements, I am told combatant commands and our 
Regional Centers are focused on building the capacity of partner 
militaries to promote and strengthen gender equality.
    I understand that the Department is developing a DOD Instruction to 
institutionalize the NAP's priorities. If confirmed, I would continue 
this progress in implementing the NAP and ensure the Department 
continues to lead by example on WPS issues.

                            family programs
    112. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, last year I attended a graduation 
ceremony at Pearl Harbor-Hickam Air Force Base. The graduates were 4-
year-olds from military families involved in a YMCA [Young Men's 
Christian Association] program. These kids reminded me that when our 
men and women in uniform are deployed, their families serve too. In the 
House of Representatives, I was the Co-Chair of the House Impact Aid 
Coalition. Impact Aid helps support local school districts that educate 
military-connected children. Please elaborate on how you will work to 
provide child care and educational opportunities to the children of 
military families.
    Mr. Hagel. I fully support the Impact Aid program, and these funds 
are primarily delivered through the Department of Education to local 
school districts. In addition, DOD has been providing hundreds of 
millions of dollars to local school districts through a 
congressionally-directed program to rebuild locally owned schools 
located on military bases that are falling into disrepair. More 
directly, DOD has spent billions of dollars on a multi-year program to 
rebuild Department owned schools that are in failing condition.
    I believe that it is the duty of the Department to prepare military 
families to cope with the challenges that military service brings In 
order to build and sustain resilient military families, the Department 
must continue to focus on programs that enhance their social, 
financial, educational and psychological well-being.
    I believe there are opportunities to improve the efficiency and 
accessibility of the resources and programs that the Department, other 
Federal agencies, State and local governments, and Department partners 
like the YMCA provide our servicemembers and their families. If 
confirmed, I will explore these opportunities and how we can better 
coordinate efforts to more effectively provide programs to our military 
families.

                           recruit readiness
    113. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, recently, a group of retired 
generals and admirals called Mission Readiness found that 75 percent of 
young Americans ages 17 to 24 are unable to join the military, 
primarily because they are poorly educated, physically unfit, or 
involved in crime. As Secretary of Defense, how will you work with 
other Federal agencies to combat these problems and improve the pool of 
potential recruitments?
    Mr. Hagel. Today's enlistment qualification standards are well-
defined, supported by years of experience, and have stood the test of 
time. They are driven by the need to provide the Services with men and 
women who are prepared to adapt to the rigors of military life and meet 
performance requirements. It is imperative we maintain the highest 
standards for these reasons.
    If confirmed, I will work closely with organizations such as 
Mission Readiness, the National Prevention Council and the First Lady's 
office to address these issues. I will explore opportunities in the 
Department to pilot healthy initiatives at several military 
installations to serve as a model for the department, and the Nation.

                            energy security
    114. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, across the globe resource scarcity, 
political and social upheaval, and other factors are changing the 
nature of the threats our Nation faces. These new challenges are 
particularly pronounced when we consider the global energy markets on 
which we rely. Prices are set based on global demand--not U.S. 
strategic and operational concerns--and many of the source nations are 
not our closest allies. Do you view U.S. energy security as a vital 
component to our overall national security?
    Mr. Hagel. Energy security is central to national security. DOD can 
play a role in promoting U.S. energy security in two ways.
    First, DOD can improve the energy security of military operations 
and defense facilities. The Department has a long history of harnessing 
innovation to meet defense challenges in ways that can benefit the 
civilian economy, and there is potential for such gains in this case.
    Second and more broadly, a core mission for DOD is preventing 
conflict, through deterrence and forward presence, partnerships with 
other nations, and a range of other activities. The Department also 
plays a supporting part in whole-of-government efforts to build peace, 
stability, and prosperity around the world. I view the Department's 
shaping and prevention efforts as vital to our overall national 
security, given the complexity of current and emerging threats and 
challenges. In that context, energy security is both part of the 
challenge and the response for DOD.

    115. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, what role, if any, do you believe 
that DOD has in supporting efforts to increase U.S. energy security?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #114.

    116. Senator Hirono. Mr. Hagel, Congress has included provisions in 
past NDAAs to give the Secretary of Defense the guidance, tools, and 
support for initiatives intended to improve the military's energy 
security and reduce fuel costs. These include section 526 of the Energy 
Independence and Security Act, establishment of an Office of 
Operational Energy Plans and Programs headed by an assistant secretary, 
and other provisions. If confirmed, do you intend to continue to 
encourage the Services to utilize these authorities to meet their 
operational and installation energy needs effectively?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.
                                 ______
                                 
                Questions Submitted by Senator Tim Kaine
                   atlantic-pacific military presence
    117. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, in 2012, DOD released its new 
strategy, noting a rebalance to Asia while also maintaining our 
commitments in the Middle East. This strategy is heavily dependent on 
the maritime forces of the Navy and the Marine Corps. What is your view 
on the necessity of maintaining our naval power projection in the 
Atlantic in order to maintain our presence in the Middle East, 
especially given the threat of Iran to the region?
    Mr. Hagel. Today, the United States must be able to project naval 
power globally, with a strategic emphasis on rebalancing to the Asia-
Pacific region and maintaining presence in and around the Middle East. 
Our Atlantic fleet will continue to play a vital role in meeting our 
global demands. If confirmed, I would work with the Secretary of the 
Navy, the Chief of Naval Operations, the Commandant of the Marine 
Corps, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to ensure a strong 
and sustainable Navy and Marine Corps that can prevail in light of 
current and projected challenges.

    118. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, please describe your view on our 
naval presence, given the current defense strategic guidance and 
ongoing conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa region.
    Mr. Hagel. Historically, the Nation has used globally deployable 
Naval forces to provide presence and power projection capabilities in 
multiple regions, often shifting between regions on short notice in 
response to emerging security threats. Naval presence will continue to 
be vital if we are to rebalance toward the Asia Pacific while 
maintaining our defense commitments in the Middle East and elsewhere. 
If confirmed, I would work with the Secretary of the Navy, the Chief of 
Naval Operations, the Commandant of the Marine Corps, and the Chairman 
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to ensure a strong and sustainable Navy 
and Marine Corps that can prevail in light of current and projected 
challenges.

                              shipbuilding
    119. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, State shipbuilding plans are 
critical to meet our strategic needs, as well as critical to maintain 
our defense industrial base and supply chain. Given the affordability 
challenges facing the defense industry, you have the responsibility to 
ensure that you set the course for our Navy's force structure and 
maintain the Nation's security, all while balancing cost and risk of 
shipbuilding efforts. Would you agree to work closely with me, with 
this committee, and with this Congress in addressing our shipbuilding 
needs?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    120. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, will you remain committed to 
ensuring that the vessels we build for our sailors and marines are the 
finest this Nation can produce and that they meet military 
classifications for warships?
    Mr. Hagel. I am committed to ensuring that survivability shall be 
addressed on all new surface ship, combat systems and equipment 
designs, overhauls, conversions, and modernizations in order that the 
design is provided a balance of survivability performance, risk, and 
cost within program objectives.

    121. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, will you agree to analyze all 
avenues of optimal program management and cost control measures in 
shipbuilding in order to allow shipbuilders to optimize design and save 
taxpayers' dollars?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

                        defense industrial base
    122. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, numerous studies by the Defense 
Business Board, GAO, and others point to a need for increased 
collaboration between industry and DOD. This becomes ever more 
important as the need for efficiencies increases and the number of 
industry participants decreases. DOD must provide our servicemembers 
with the best equipment possible. Enhancing innovation for defense 
applications through the current acquisition system may be an ongoing 
challenge in this fiscal environment. How will DOD sustain and improve 
capabilities that have been developed through collaborative innovation 
with industry?
    Mr. Hagel. Industry is our partner in defending this Nation and I 
fully recognize the vital role it plays in our national security. If 
confirmed, I will assess our current programs regarding collaborative 
efforts with industry, particularly in the areas of research and 
development, to leverage the innovation of the private sector.

    123. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, what is your assessment of the 
health of the defense industrial base and areas that require more 
attention?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe in a strong, healthy industrial base, and I am 
concerned that changes in the defense market may impact that base. If 
confirmed, I will ensure the Department has a process to assess 
fragility of the capabilities needed provide our military with the best 
equipment in the world.

                           veteran assistance
    124. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, you noted in your advance policy 
questions your commitment to improving the care veterans receive as 
they transition from Active Duty to civilian life. In the past few 
years, we have seen a high rate of unemployment among veterans, as well 
as increasing rates of suicide among this population. In your view, 
what are the most critical areas of improvement for veterans care?
    Mr. Hagel. This is a far ranging issue that will warrant 
significant attention from me, if confirmed. It is my understanding 
that our current focus areas are providing: a seamless transition of 
health information from DOD to the Department of Veterans Affairs, 
timely processing of disability claims, and transitional support such 
as employment assistance and related help. If confirmed, I will 
evaluate the entire domain of veteran's transition for effectiveness 
and where we need more improvement.

    125. Senator Kaine. Mr. Hagel, what are the areas of potential 
collaboration among public and private sector entities?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that there are numerous areas where public 
and private collaborations could advance solutions for some of our most 
pressing issues with veterans care. These include opportunities to 
collaborate in: scientific research; improving access to mental health 
care and piloting new and innovative models of care; ensuring that 
military training in medical triage and care provision translates to 
employment in the private sector through collaboration with 
professional organizations, certification bodies, and academic training 
programs (e.g., medics serving as EMTs); and developing evidenced-based 
care guidelines and treatment protocols for psychological health and 
Traumatic Brain Injury.
                                 ______
                                 
           Questions Submitted by Senator Angus S. King, Jr.
                   concern about the industrial base
    126. Senator King. Mr. Hagel, last year, the Chief of Naval 
Operations (CNO), Admiral Jonathan Greenert, testified before this 
committee about the consequences of sequestration for shipbuilding. 
Admiral Greenert said that if sequestration kicks in, we will lose 
capabilities in some of our shipyards and we would be looking at a 
fleet of 230 ships compared to the current fleet of 285 ships. He went 
on to say, ``I'm very concerned about an industrial base that would be 
able to adjust from sequestration. It would be very difficult to keep a 
shipbuilder that could be efficient in building the types of ships we 
need.'' In short, he described the very type of irreversible 
consequences that we must avoid. I am proud of the workers at Bath Iron 
Works in my home State, but this issue is larger than that because the 
six remaining shipyards that build Navy ships are truly strategic 
assets that once lost, cannot be restored in a timely manner. Do you 
agree with the CNO's assessment and share my alarm that sequestration 
will result in greater per unit costs, an unacceptable danger to our 
industrial base, and a smaller Navy fleet?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, I agree that the industrial base is a strategic 
asset that needs to be protected and that sequestration may have 
irreversible impacts in the long term. Sequestration budget cuts would 
certainly reduce ship procurement and maintenance, impacting fleet 
size. Sequestration would also implement automatic spending cuts 
without regard for strategy or priorities, so the Navy would be forced 
into a position where they could not execute contract options that were 
negotiated to minimize unit costs and stabilize workload in the 
shipyards. If confirmed, I will work with Congress to avert 
sequestration and work with the Navy to protect the industrial base.

                        ddg-51 destroyer program
    127. Senator King. Mr. Hagel, the enacted NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 
authorized a multi-year procurement of up to 10 DDG-51 destroyers 
during the next 5 years beginning in fiscal year 2013. The 
Appropriations Committees of both the House of Representatives and the 
Senate adopted fiscal year 2013 defense appropriations bills also 
included funding to support a 10-ship program. Multi-years present 
unique opportunities to procure required major defense systems more 
cost effectively than through annual procurements. I realize that 
enactment of the fiscal year 2013 defense appropriations legislation is 
required before the Navy can execute this vital multi-year procurement 
and achieve cost savings while also helping to stabilize our 
specialized shipbuilding industrial base. Will you let the leadership 
on both sides of the aisle in the Senate and the House of 
Representatives know how critical it is that we enact a fiscal year 
2013 Defense Appropriations Bill?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will certainly continue to stress to 
Congress the importance of receiving an enacted fiscal year 2013 
Defense Appropriations Bill. A year-long CR reduces the Department's 
funding flexibility by spending money on last year's priorities not 
this year's--an untenable position. It also pushes the Department to 
use month-to-month contracts and prohibits doing ``new starts'' in 
military construction or acquisition programs.

                            berry amendment
    128. Senator King. Mr. Hagel, according to the Berry Amendment, DOD 
cannot procure clothing items unless they are produced in the United 
States. Congress first established this domestic preference for DOD 
procurement in 1941, and for decades the military branches complied by 
issuing American-made uniforms, including athletic footwear, for our 
troops. In recent years, however, DOD has circumvented this policy by 
issuing cash allowances to soldiers for their own purchase of training 
shoes.
    New Balance makes a compliant athletic shoe. New Balance has 5,000 
pairs of Berry-compliant footwear sitting on their shelves, as we 
speak. Next year, enforcing compliance with Berry would actually save 
money. Currently, the Navy gives a $68 cash allowance to recruits, and 
Berry-compliant shoes from New Balance cost $68. Next year, the 
allowance will increase to $74, but the Berry-compliant shoe cost will 
remain the same. That's a $6 savings per pair of running shoes.
    Will you review this policy and work to assure that compliant gear 
is purchased and U.S. jobs are protected?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will review the Department's policies 
pertaining to the athletic running shoes provided to military enlisted 
recruits and will ensure the Department meets its obligations under the 
Berry Amendment.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator James M. Inhofe
                            taiwan relations
    129. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act and 
the Six Assurances of 1982 have contributed to the peace and stability 
of the Asia-Pacific region for the past 3 decades. With the military 
balance--including air superiority--gradually shifting in China's 
favor, what are your plans to implement the security commitment the 
United States has for Taiwan under this framework?
    Mr. Hagel. In my view, the increasing complexity and sophistication 
of the military threat to Taiwan from China means that Taiwan must 
devote greater attention to asymmetric concepts and innovative 
technologies to maximize Taiwan's strengths and advantages. If 
confirmed, I would work closely with Congress, throughout DOD, and with 
our interagency partners to ensure the continued effective 
implementation of all of the relevant provisions of the Taiwan 
Relations Act.
    I believe that we should make available to Taiwan those defense 
articles and defense services which enable Taiwan to maintain a 
sufficient self-defense capability, today and into the future. If 
confirmed, I will look at what specific self-defense capabilities 
Taiwan needs in light of the security situation in the Taiwan Strait 
and the evolving military capabilities on the mainland.

    130. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, as Taiwan is likely to retire some 
of its older fighter aircraft in the next 5 to 10 years, do you believe 
that sales of advanced aircraft are an important next step in this 
commitment?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #129.

                             east china sea
    131. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, last August, Taiwan President Ma 
Ying-jeou proposed an East China Sea Peace Initiative to address the 
ongoing dispute between Japan and China over the Senkaku or Diaoyutai 
Islands. While Taiwan also claims sovereignty over the islands as part 
of the Republic of China, it ``calls on all parties concerned to 
resolve disputes peacefully based on the U.N. Charter and relevant 
provisions in international law.'' In its proposal, Taiwan goes on to 
call on all parties to:

    1.  Refrain from taking any antagonistic actions;
    2.  Shelve controversies and not abandon dialogue;
    3.  Observe international law and resolve disputes through peaceful 
means;
    4.  Seek consensus on a code of conduct in the East China Sea; and
    5.  Establish a mechanism for cooperation on exploring and 
developing resources in the East China Sea.

    Do you believe that such an initiative is a constructive and 
necessary step in resolving the dispute in a peaceful and comprehensive 
manner?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, working with the Secretary of State and 
other interagency counterparts, I would carefully consider any 
initiative that seeks to reduce tensions and facilitate a diplomatic 
solution to the current tensions.

                               east asia
    132. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, Myanmar has been invited as an 
observer to the Cobra Gold exercises in 2013. Do you believe inclusion 
of the Burmese military is timely?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that plans call for two Burmese military 
officers to be included in the Cobra Gold Observer Program as a way to 
promote the Burmese military's exposure to the international community 
and international norms of behavior. I believe that this step is timely 
and sensible. I also agree with the current Department stance that 
future participation should be contingent on continued progress by the 
Government of Burma in consolidating democratic reforms, improving its 
human rights record, promoting national reconciliation, and suspending 
military ties to North Korea.

    133. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you envision that the Burmese 
will be brought into security partnerships with the United States 
bilaterally or through multilateral arrangements with regional 
militaries?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the administration's approach of cautious and 
calibrated engagement with the Burmese military through bilateral and 
multilateral arrangements. If confirmed, I will consult with Congress 
regarding the scope and scale of bilateral engagement. I also agree 
with the current policy that a normalization of defense relations with 
Burma can only occur if the Government of Burma continues its efforts 
to democratize, improves its human rights record, implements national 
reconciliation efforts with its various ethnic groups, and suspends 
military ties to North Korea. I also support robust multilateral 
engagement of the United States with the Association of Southeast Asian 
Nations (ASEAN) and its ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting-Plus (ADMM+) 
efforts, of which Burma is a member and will be chair in 2014.

    134. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, will a reduction of DOD's budget 
impact security cooperation and regional security in East Asia?
    Mr. Hagel. As the President has stated, the United States is a 
Pacific power with enduring interests in the peace and security of the 
region. If confirmed, I will work to uphold and prioritize our security 
commitments in the Asia-Pacific region. However, sequestration's 
effects would be disastrous for the Department and would necessitate a 
review of the new defense strategy.

    135. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, will budget cuts impact our ability 
to perform humanitarian relief missions or participate in military 
exercises like Thailand's Cobra Gold?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I would continue ongoing efforts to ensure 
that the United States remains the security partner of choice in the 
Asia-Pacific region. However, sequestration would necessitate a 
reevaluation of the U.S. defense strategy and any further reductions 
could require adjustments to overall implementation of the strategy.

                                  iran
    136. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the Iranian regime continues to 
threaten neighbors--our allies in the region like Azerbaijan. There 
were news reports throughout the past year that Azerbaijan's security 
services arrested several activists belonging to the Iranian 
intelligence service and Hezbollah. These operatives were suspected of 
planning terrorist attacks against foreigners in the capital Baku, 
including the U.S. and Israeli embassies. The United States has long-
term interests in the Caspian region and the South Caucasus. Azerbaijan 
and the United States cooperate in countering terrorism, nuclear 
proliferation and narcotics trafficking, and promoting security in the 
wider Caspian region and beyond. As a key component to the NDN, 
Azerbaijan provides ground and naval transit for roughly 40 percent of 
the ISAF coalition's supplies bound for Afghanistan. Azerbaijan 
expressed its commitment to support U.S. and NATO efforts in 
stabilizing Afghanistan beyond 2014 and is among first eight non-NATO 
potential operational partners. Azerbaijan has been extending important 
over-flight clearance, landing, and refueling operations for U.S. and 
NATO flights to support ISAF. In 2012, more than 150 aero-medical 
evacuation flights of U.S. Air Mobility Command have flown over 
Azerbaijan, rushing more than 2,200 patients to a higher level of 
medical care. The United States has also energy interests in the region 
and our energy companies have interests in exploring Caspian Sea oil 
resources and deliver them westwards to provide for energy security to 
our European allies.
    If confirmed, what do you think DOD should do to strengthen the 
security of our regional allies, like Azerbaijan, that face pressure 
and open threats from Iran on a daily basis, and what are the areas you 
think we should look into to expand security and defense cooperation 
with Azerbaijan to ensure it has adequate means to defend its 
territory?
    Mr. Hagel. I have deep concerns about Iran's destabilizing 
activities and recognize the many shared interests between the United 
States and Azerbaijan. If confirmed, I would continue the Defense 
Department's high level engagement with its counterparts in Azerbaijan. 
In particular, I would seek to strengthen existing areas of partnership 
and identify new areas of cooperation in support of Azerbaijan's 
defense reforms, its ability to interoperate with NATO and deploy to 
coalition operations, its capacity to address terrorism and other 
transnational threats and to secure its maritime borders and energy 
infrastructure. I would look for the United States to be Azerbaijan's 
partner of choice and help Azerbaijan's defense establishment 
contribute to regional security and stability, such as by continuing to 
encourage Azerbaijan's significant support to international efforts in 
Afghanistan.

                           military suicides
    137. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, I am very concerned about the 
significant rise in military suicides. According to the most current 
published DOD Suicide Event Report, 301 suicides occurred among 
military servicemembers in 2011. DOD recently reported 349 suicides in 
2012--more than the total number of deaths incurred in combat. Do you 
believe DOD is doing all it can to prevent the tragic number of 
suicides in the Military Services?
    Mr. Hagel. The Department is doing all that it can given the 
complex nature of suicide and society's limited base of knowledge in 
this realm. Suicide among our Nation's military is clearly tragic and 
will require solutions that are informed by evidence of effectiveness. 
There is some proof that peer support and call lines help. There is 
also a need to continue the focus on resilience building and leadership 
education.

    138. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what will you do to get this 
problem fixed?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I am committed to seeing that programs 
that focus on resiliency and leadership education continue and are 
further evaluated with additional research. Furthermore, I understand 
that the Department is in the process of drafting its first 
comprehensive suicide prevention program policy. It would be a top 
priority to review and implement this program policy as soon as it is 
ready.

    139. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, is DOD fully funding the Services' 
suicide prevention programs and research programs that inform us about 
effective prevention strategies?
    Mr. Hagel. I am not currently familiar with the details of our 
research program spending in this area, but I share the views of the 
leadership of the Army and the entire Department that this is a top 
priority. If confirmed, I will review these research programs for 
efficiency and effectiveness in identifying strategies to prevent 
suicides and will work to ensure that sufficient funding is available 
for this important effort. As with other programs, sequestration could 
have a damaging impact on our efforts in this area.

    140. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, how will you continue 
to fund these efforts under sequestration and a year-long Continuing 
Resolution?
    Mr. Hagel. The impact of sequestration combined with a year-long 
Continuing Resolution will present the Department with very serious 
funding challenges. I am deeply concerned about the significant rise in 
military suicides and am firmly committed to ensuring that the 
Department have the funds necessary to provide high-quality behavioral 
health care to servicemembers and their families. But protecting these 
vital personnel programs will require sacrifices in other important 
areas.

   impact of sequestration on the defense health program and family 
                            support programs
    141. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, in your advance policy questions 
you agreed with the Joint Chiefs when they said that a full-year 
Continuing Resolution and sequestration would ``damage our readiness, 
our people, and our military families.'' Additionally, you stated: 
``Sustaining family programs in the current fiscally constrained 
environment will be challenging, but it is of vital importance.''
    Under sequestration, do you agree that morale will suffer and 
beneficiaries may not be able to get the health care and support 
services they need?
    Mr. Hagel. I share the concern of our senior military leaders that 
the morale of the force will be affected in ways that are unpredictable 
if sequester goes into effect and disrupts our training, readiness, and 
family support programs. If confirmed, I will attempt to ensure that 
reductions do not break faith with our troops and they continue to 
receive the health care and support services they need.

    142. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you ensure that 
defense budget cuts will not hinder or harm the extraordinary care and 
support that our wounded warriors and their families receive?
    Mr. Hagel. I want to make it clear that if confirmed I will make it 
a priority to minimize the impact of sequestration on our wounded 
warriors and their families. However, sequestration provides no 
exemption for military health care funding, and across the board cuts 
to those programs are required by law if sequester takes place. If 
confirmed, I will seek to protect funding for wounded warrior care to 
the greatest extent possible, subject to those constraints.

                                 budget
    143. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, during a series of video interviews 
with the Financial Times on August 29, 2011, you were asked about the 
prospect of sequestration and its impact on DOD. When asked about the 
impact of an automatic $600 billion cut to DOD (beyond the $487 billion 
already proposed by the President in April 2011), you appear to 
disagree with Secretary Panetta's assessment that such cuts would be 
devastating. Instead you stated that you feel DOD is ``bloated'' and 
that ``the Pentagon needs to be pared down''.
    In an exchange with Senator Blunt at your confirmation hearing, my 
colleague asked you to provide some specific examples of what you were 
referring to when you identified the DOD budget as being ``bloated.'' 
During the hearing, you failed to provide any specificity, so please do 
so now of where you believe defense spending is excessive and what 
accounts and programs you believe should be cut.
    Mr. Hagel. I have never said that I support sequestration. I do not 
nor have I ever supported sequestration. I support the 2011 Budget 
Control Act. I stand by my view that inefficiency and waste exists in 
DOD that could and should be reduced or eliminated. The record shows, 
in my view, that both the Department's leadership and Congress have 
expressed similar views. In his May 2010 speech at the Eisenhower 
library, then-Secretary Gates launched an effort to cut inefficiency 
and waste in the Department that had grown up over the previous decade 
of rising budgets.
    As he noted at the time, inefficiency is not just about money. He 
cited in that speech a ``top-heavy hierarchy'' in DOD that was out of 
step with the 21st century. Following that speech, the Department began 
reducing unneeded senior executive and general officer positions to 
reduce layers of management.
    In the Department's next two budget submissions for fiscal year 
2011 and fiscal year 2012, they produced separate justification books, 
which the Committee has on file, detailing plans to cut inefficiency 
and lower-priority programs by $178 billion and then another $60 
billion, respectively. I believe many of those reductions, in areas 
such as information technology, smarter acquisition, streamlined 
management, and reorganizations, are underway but not yet fully 
realized.
    Notwithstanding these efforts by the Department, Congress was able 
to find additional savings and reduced defense spending below the level 
requested by the Department in both of these fiscal years by 
approximately $20 billion per year.

    143a. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe military resources 
should drive strategy or should strategy drive resources?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe strategy should drive our resource decisions, 
but our strategy must also be realistic and resource-informed.

    144. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that DOD should 
pursue a National Security Strategy that assumes a relatively high 
degree of risk for our military?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the Department has developed a strategy that 
meets the challenges of the current and future security environment 
that both minimizes risk and complies with the fiscal constraints 
imposed by the Budget Control Act (BCA). I also believe that by ending 
the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and rebalancing to a strategic 
posture that modernizes alliances, builds partner capacity and 
maintains a ready, agile and responsive force, we reduce the risk to 
our military.

    145. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, if it is determined that the 
reductions being proposed need to be revised and that additional 
resources are necessary to meet our national security needs, do you 
believe you would have the flexibility to advocate for a decrease in 
the $487 billion reduction to defense budgets if you determined a 
significant adverse impact to national security?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will continue to work with OMB and 
Congress to seek the resources necessary to provide the military 
capabilities the defense of our Nation requires. However, the mechanism 
of sequestration enacted in the Budget Control Act and the lack of a 
full year appropriation are my immediate concerns as they would 
severely limit the Department's flexibility to ensure the military has 
the funds it requires to fulfill its mission.

    146. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, over the past 4 years this 
administration has pursued the systematic disarming of U.S. military 
power under the guise of defense budget cuts in order to maintain 
significantly higher levels of funding for non-security-related 
domestic programs. In a letter I sent to Secretary Panetta earlier this 
month, I reiterated that we are in full agreement that any additional 
cuts to defense spending, especially those of the magnitude of 
sequestration, would be unacceptable and will result in serious and 
lasting harm to the capabilities and readiness of our military. Do you 
agree that sequestration would have lasting harm to the capabilities 
and readiness of our military?
    Mr. Hagel. The combined impacts of a Continuing Resolution and 
Sequestration will have a devastating impact on our readiness, 
especially given that we have a shorter period of time and limited 
flexibility to manage where the reductions are taken. Based on my 
assessment to date, sequestration would harm military readiness and 
disrupt each and every investment program. Some of the more notable 
impacts of sequester would be reduced global activities, less training 
which would decrease readiness, disruption of investment programs, 
limits on military construction, and forced furloughs and hiring 
freezes for civilian workers.

    147. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that averting 
sequestration should be our highest priority?
    Mr. Hagel. Adverting sequestration, as well as providing the 
Department a fiscal year 2013 appropriations bill, should be Congress' 
highest priority.

    148. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that Congress and the 
administration have a shared responsibility in averting sequestration?
    Mr. Hagel. The ability to avoid sequestration and to pass a full-
year appropriations bill for DOD is within the power of Congress. It is 
my desire that Congress and the administration reach an agreement on a 
balanced package of deficit reductions that leads to detriggering of 
sequestration and regular appropriation bills.

                             cybersecurity
    149. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, in your advance policy questions 
you stated that it is ``your understanding that the Department of 
Homeland Security (DHS) has the lead for domestic cybersecurity.'' 
Cyberspace perhaps more so than any other domain is not bound and has 
little regard to geographical boundaries. When it comes to the defense 
of the Homeland from a foreign attack what role do you believe DOD 
should play?
    Mr. Hagel. DOD has the responsibility to defend, deter, and when 
directed by the President, take action to defend the United States, its 
allies, and its interests in cyberspace as in all domains. I agree that 
threats in cyberspace can cross both physical boundaries and particular 
departmental responsibilities, and, therefore, believe it is critical 
for the Department to work closely with both the public and private 
sectors. To support DOD national security responsibilities, I believe 
that the Department must maintain a close partnership with DHS.

    149a. Senator Inhofe. Do you believe DOD should be the principal 
U.S. Government agency responsible for protecting the United States 
against foreign cyber-attacks to the Homeland?
    Mr. Hagel. It is my understanding that DOD has the mission to 
defend the Nation in cyberspace and that DHS should be the lead for 
coordinating the cybersecurity of U.S. critical infrastructure. I 
support these roles and relationship.

    150. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, I understand there is some 
confusion over the role DHS would play in such an attack on the 
Homeland in cyberspace. Do you believe that DHS should have anything 
more than a supporting role to DOD in a cyberattack against the 
Homeland?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that DOD has the mission to defend the 
Nation in cyberspace, and that this includes a close partnership with 
DHS in its role of leading efforts for the cybersecurity of U.S. 
critical infrastructure, and non-DOD unclassified government networks. 
I believe that DHS plays a vital role in securing unclassified Federal 
civilian government networks and working with owners and operators of 
critical infrastructure to secure their networks through risk 
assessment, mitigation, incident response capabilities, and sharing 
cyber threat and vulnerability information. DOD supports DHS in its 
domestic role.

    151. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, who, in your opinion, should be 
that principal agency with the responsibility of coordinating the 
defense of the Homeland from a foreign cyberattack and the response?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the current administration approach, in which 
DOD has the responsibility to defend, deter, and, when directed by the 
President, take action to defend the United States, its allies, and its 
interests in cyberspace as in all domains. I also support DOD's 
partnership with DHS in its role leading efforts for the cybersecurity 
of U.S. critical infrastructure.

    152. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, capabilities-wise, do you agree 
that DOD and the National Security Agency have the most comprehensive 
set of resources to defend the Nation from a foreign cyberattack?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. At the same time, I believe that DOD should work 
closely with other departments and agencies that have unique 
responsibilities, capabilities, and expertise, such as DHS and the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation.

    153. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that establishing 
bureaucracies and duplicative efforts at DHS would be unwise?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that departments and agencies should not set up 
unnecessary bureaucracies or duplicative efforts. In the cyber domain, 
I believe that DOD and DHS should continue to team together to address 
cyber threats, understanding that each has specific roles and missions, 
and that DOD has the mission to defend the Nation in cyberspace.

    154. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, a recent Wall Street Journal 
article titled ``Banks seek U.S. Help on Iran Cybersecurity'' states 
that ``major U.S. banks are pressing for government action to block or 
squelch what Washington officials say is an intensifying Iranian 
campaign of cyberattacks against American financial institutions.'' The 
article asserts that some of the financial institutions are concerned 
by the lack of U.S. Government response arguing that the banks ``can't 
be expected to fend off attacks from a foreign government.'' According 
to the article, ``U.S. officials have been weighing options, including 
whether to retaliate against Iran.''
    What role do you believe DOD should play in events such as the 
recent/ongoing Iranian attacks on the financial sector and do you 
believe there is an offensive role DOD should be able to utilize via 
cyberspace?
    Mr. Hagel. Although I am not aware of the specific details of these 
events, DOD plays a critical role in a whole-of-government effort to 
address threats to both our national and economic security. The 
President has made clear that the United States will respond to hostile 
acts in cyberspace as we would any other threat to our country, and 
that the United States reserves the right to use all necessary means, 
including military means as a last resort, to defend our Nation and our 
interests. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department develops the 
necessary cyber capabilities to defend and, if directed by the 
President, conduct offensive operations.

    155. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, I was concerned to read in your 
advance policy questions that you seem to believe that we are deterring 
and dissuading our adversaries in cyberspace. In a letter sent to 
Senator McCain last year by General Alexander, the Commander of U.S. 
Cyber Command, he asked a similar question to which Gen. Alexander 
simply stated ``No . . . much remains to be done across both the public 
and private sector.''
    Do you agree with General Alexander's assessment? If not, why not?
    Mr. Hagel. I do believe that the United States has successfully 
deterred major cyber attacks. However, I agree with General Alexander 
that there is much more to be done to protect the Nation from cyber 
threats. If confirmed, I am committed to continuing DOD efforts to 
strengthen the Department's cyber capabilities and support 
cybersecurity efforts across the public and private sector. One such 
opportunity would be to pass legislation that allows for increased 
information sharing on cyber threats and the development of critical 
infrastructure cybersecurity standards in partnership with the private 
sector.

    156. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what role do you believe offensive 
cyber capabilities should play in cyber deterrence?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that an important element of deterrence is to 
develop and maintain a wide variety of capabilities, including cyber 
capabilities, that can impose costs on a potential adversary. If 
confirmed, I will ensure that DOD provides the President with a broad 
range of military options.

    157. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the mission to 
defend the Homeland will require both offensive and defensive cyber 
forces and tools?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I believe the Department must provide a wide range 
of credible capabilities in all domains, both offensive and defensive, 
to defend the Nation.

                        national missile defense
    158. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you still support the Missile 
Defense Act of 1999?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, I co-sponsored the National Missile Defense Act of 
1999, and I continue to support the law.

    159. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that protection of the 
United States from the threat of ballistic missile attack is a critical 
national security priority?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    160. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree it is necessary to 
modernize and expand our national missile defense, formally known as 
the GMD system, to keep pace with the growing threat?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the continued modernization, and expansion if 
necessary, of the GMD system and the other missile defense efforts that 
can contribute to the protection of the homeland in the future.

                       missile defense in europe
    161. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the deployment of 
SM-3 interceptors in Poland and Romania, as currently planned, is 
provocative for the Russians?
    Mr. Hagel. While the Russians have argued that the later phases of 
the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) could undermine their 
strategic deterrent, the United States has repeatedly stated that the 
EPAA is not directed at Russia and will not have the capability to 
undermine Russia's ICBM forces. I agree with this view.

    162. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you support President Obama's 
commitment to deploy SM-3 missiles in Romania and Poland as currently 
planned?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the President's approach to missile defense in 
Europe, including the deployment of the Aegis Ashore sites in Romania 
and Poland as currently planned. If confirmed, I will ensure the 
Department continues to support the implementation of the European 
Phased Adaptive Approach.

    163. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the United States 
should provide legal assurances to Russia that would limit U.S. missile 
defense capabilities?
    Mr. Hagel. The President is on record as saying, and I agree, that 
the United States cannot accept any limits on its BMD systems.

    164. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree to inform this 
committee about ongoing discussions with the Russians concerning 
potential limits to U.S. missile defense capabilities or cooperation 
with Russia in missile defense?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will keep Congress apprised as required 
by the 2013 NDAA.

                            nuclear weapons
    165. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you support modernization of the 
nuclear triad and the nuclear weapons complex, as per the stated intent 
of the President in his Message to the Senate on the New START treaty?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the President's commitment to a safe, secure, 
and effective nuclear deterrent as long as nuclear weapons exist. I 
believe that modernizing nuclear forces and infrastructure is critical 
and should be a national priority. I also believe that there is a 
continuing need to sustain the skilled workforce that underpins 
deterrence capabilities.

    166. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that restoring NNSA's 
production infrastructure is necessary to allow excess warheads to be 
retired along with other potential stockpile reductions to the 
nondeployed stockpile over time?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that modernizing the nuclear weapons 
production infrastructure is very important, and that doing so is 
necessary to reducing the stockpile hedge over time.

    167. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe it is important to 
have the capacity to surge production in the event of significant 
geopolitical surprise?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that a modernized nuclear weapons 
infrastructure that would allow production of additional warheads is 
important to hedge against significant, unforeseen changes in the 
international security situation.

    168. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what do you believe should be the 
proper role of DOD in determining the annual funding requests for NNSA 
Weapons Activities?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that the Nuclear Weapons Council (NWC) 
provides a statutory forum wherein the Department of Energy's National 
Nuclear Security Administration and DOD come together to make 
programmatic and funding decisions and, as appropriate, recommendations 
for the Secretaries to coordinate requirements and expenditures. If 
confirmed, I look forward to working with the NWC and the Secretary of 
Energy to best coordinate our requirements in a fiscally responsible 
manner to continue to meet the Nation's security needs.

                        arms control compliance
    169. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that any outstanding 
nuclear weapons treaty compliance concerns should be addressed before 
the United States pursues further nuclear arms reduction negotiations 
with Russia?
    Mr. Hagel. Compliance with legal obligations is central to the 
effectiveness of arms control treaties, and concerns about non-
compliance must be addressed. If confirmed, I will ensure that DOD 
works with the Department of State and other interagency partners in 
assessing and responding to compliance concerns. While resolution of 
such issues with Russia is clearly important, I do not believe that 
discussions of possible further nuclear arms reductions need await 
resolution of all compliance issues.

                    dod financial management system
    170. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, are you committed to modernizing 
DOD's financial management systems?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I understand that implementation of modern, 
integrated business systems is well underway and I will continue to 
monitor and support these efforts. They must contribute to improved 
efficiency and must also sustain the quality and fidelity of financial 
information that we need to manage with.

    171. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, would you emphasize 
financial management improvement and audit readiness as a top priority?
    Mr. Hagel. Improving the Department's financial management 
capability is an important priority and if confirmed, I will ensure 
that senior leaders are focused on this goal and hold them accountable.

                 budget cuts and operational readiness
    172. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, does the fiscal year 2013 defense 
budget of $525.3 billion with $88.5 in OCO funding, affect DOD's 
ability to ``respond to every contingency'' as you highlighted in your 
opening statement?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, the Department's ability to respond to 
contingencies is directly related to the funding it receives which is 
translated into military capabilities. I believe the Department can 
implement the administration's present strategy within the budget it 
has requested. That said, if sequestration occurs, the Department would 
need to significantly revise the defense strategy and, in all 
probability, would need to make some hard choices about which of our 
current national defense capabilities we could afford to retain.

                        aging military equipment
    173. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the Chief of Staff of the Army, and 
the Commandant of the Marine Corps have stated that they need at least 
2 years of OCO funding after withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan in 
order to reset their equipment. If confirmed, will you be prepared to 
continue requesting OCO funding until all equipment has been reset?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I believe that it will require considerable time to 
repair equipment returning from operations in Afghanistan because of 
the nature of the repairs and difficulty of removing the equipment from 
Afghanistan.

                        end strength reductions
    174. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do the planned reductions to Army 
and Marine Corps end strengths affect DOD's ability to ``respond to 
every contingency'' as you highlighted in your opening statement?
    Mr. Hagel. Current reductions in the Army and Marine Corps are 
being carefully managed in order to balance risk with the right mix of 
capabilities necessary to fulfill all of the missions required by the 
Defense Strategic Guidance. Currently, reductions are predicated on the 
U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) plans to continue off-ramping forces 
heading to Afghanistan. This risk we can manage. However, I am very 
concerned about the risk to the Nation given the possibility of 
sequestration and the potential for a full year Continuing Resolution. 
If not resolved, the fiscal situation could have significant impact on 
the ability of the Department to do what is required by the Defense 
Strategic Guidance. It is not the planned cuts to the Army and Marine 
Corps that cause significant risk, but rather the ones that we may be 
forced to make due to the uncertain fiscal environment.

                       defense budget priorities
    175. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, during your testimony you stated 
that, if confirmed, you will confine the dollars we are going to spend 
in the defense budget for defense purposes, in support of the 
warfighter. Do we also have your assurance that you will submit a 
budget that reflects this commitment?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe a fundamental foundation of any defense budget 
submission is to provide the best support we can to our warfighters and 
ensure their capabilities, readiness and agility are sustained. If 
confirmed, I will uphold this commitment.

                            industrial base
    176. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what is your definition of the 
industrial base?
    Mr. Hagel. The defense industrial base is a diverse and dynamic set 
of companies that provide both products and services, directly and 
indirectly, to national security agencies, including the military. The 
defense industrial base includes companies of all shapes and sizes from 
some of the world's largest public companies to small businesses.

    177. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, what will be your 
approach to preserving the industrial base?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will ensure the Department continually 
assesses the health of the industrial base. I will work closely with 
industry and Congress and will be prepared to act to preserve needed 
skills and manufacturing capabilities, as resources permit.

                           acquisition reform
    178. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, it seems that every time we have a 
change in administrations or the Secretaries of Defense, another 
acquisition study is commissioned, usually ignoring the 300 plus 
studies that have already produced a report. If confirmed, what will be 
your approach to ensuring the acquisition system produces affordable 
capabilities that are responsive to the needs of the warfighter?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand the Department has undertaken a series of 
``Better Buying Power'' initiatives as a broadbased collection of 
comprehensive, detailed, initiatives to improve acquisition practices 
and ensure the Department is procuring affordable, technically 
achievable capabilities on cost and schedule. If confirmed, I will 
examine these initiatives to ensure that they adequately address the 
problems with the Department's acquisition system.

                              green agenda
    179. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, following up on your testimony, you 
stated in response to questions posed by the committee on your 
priorities for defense investments in energy technologies that ``my 
broad priorities for defense energy investments will be those that: 
increase military capabilities, provide more mission success, and lower 
total cost.''
    With the budget cuts DOD is facing, how will your priorities impact 
DOD's current plan to invest $9 billion over the next 5 years on energy 
technology investments and an additional $4 billion for renewable 
energy facility projects?
    Mr. Hagel. I have not yet reviewed the Department's budget related 
to energy technologies. If confirmed, I will ensure that investments in 
the operational energy area drive enhanced military capabilities, 
facilitate mission effectiveness, and lower costs.

    180. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, what criteria would 
you establish to focus investments on your priorities?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, my main criteria will be to ensure that 
DOD investments enhance readiness and warfighting effectiveness and 
increase our national security.

    181. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that defense funds 
should be used to develop a commercial biofuels refinery?
    Mr. Hagel. The Nation's long-term energy security would benefit 
from a competitive, domestic renewable fuels industry; as a major 
consumer of liquid fuels, the Department would benefit, as well. That 
said, I am not yet in a position to comment on the trade-offs between 
the value of this investment and the other priorities of the 
Department.

    182. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that critical 
operations and maintenance funds intended for the training, equipping, 
and readiness of our Armed Forces should be used to pay for alternate 
fuels that exceed the cost of traditional fossil fuels?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the Department's primary operational energy 
goal should be to ensure operational military readiness. I understand 
that most of the Department's investments in alternate fuels since 2003 
have been for the purpose of ensuring that military platforms can 
operate on a wide range of fuels, providing useful military flexibility 
if and when they become commercially available and cost competitive 
with petroleum products.

    183. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, will you pledge to work with 
Congress to ensure that all investments and purchases of renewable 
energy technologies and alternate fuels are supported by specific 
congressional authorizations for that purpose?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department's energy 
investments comply with congressional authorizations.

    184. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, according to a recent report by a 
major oil and gas company, the United States will be energy self-
sufficient in 2030. Other reports by respected organizations have 
agreed. Do you agree that the United States could become energy 
independent in the next 20 years?
    Mr. Hagel. I am greatly encouraged by the recent developments in 
the U.S. energy sector and the benefits for our economy.

    185. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, how do you foresee this impacting 
U.S. foreign policy?
    Mr. Hagel. Reducing the Nation's dependence on foreign oil is an 
important national security imperative. That said, because oil prices 
are set on a global market and will be for the foreseeable future, the 
stability of global oil markets will continue to be important for the 
U.S. economy.

                          u.s. africa command
    186. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the outgoing Secretary of Defense 
has been a strong supporter of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) and 
critical engagement and operations ongoing throughout the continent of 
Africa. AFRICOM has less than 5,000 boots on the African continent to 
cover 54 countries and over 12 million square miles. Its forces are 
completely shared with U.S. European Command (EUCOM). How will the 
United States be able to adequately support AFRICOM operations given 
the cuts in EUCOM personnel, coupled with additional cuts in DOD 
funding?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that our low-cost, small-footprint presence 
and operations in Africa are appropriate to promoting our interests and 
addressing threats to us and our partners. U.S. forces are managed 
globally to address ongoing needs anywhere, so forces that operate in 
and around Africa extend beyond those assigned to EUCOM. Moreover, 
since the attacks on our diplomatic facilities in Benghazi, I 
understand that the Department has undergone a rigorous evaluation of 
our military posture across the region, to including assessing EUCOM 
and AFRICOM force posture. If confirmed, I would continue to ensure 
that we appropriately manage the allocation of U.S. military forces 
across the globe, including in Africa, to ensure we are best 
positioning ourselves on any given day for contingencies that may 
arise.

    187. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the President's new strategy calls 
for a ``rebalancing'' of resources to the Asia Pacific theater, 
maintaining focus on the Middle East, and ``evolving'' force posture in 
Europe. Do you believe the President's new Asia-focused strategy puts 
our operations at high risk for Africa and South America?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree with the Defense Department's new strategy and 
move to rebalance to the Asia-Pacific region while maintaining focus on 
challenges in the Middle East. The strategy also makes it clear that we 
will still have interests we need to protect in other regions of the 
world and that we will do so through continued partnership, rotational 
presence, and smaller foot-print activities. If confirmed, I will make 
sure that we are always mindful of how we address threats, manage risk, 
and promote our interests in all parts of the world , and what role the 
U.S. military and DOD play in that as part of an overall U.S. effort. 
However, we may have to seek different approaches to pursuing our 
interests in these other regions if the size of our overall defense 
budget declines further.

    188. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the headquarters for AFRICOM is in 
Stuttgart, Germany. Would you consider moving AFRICOM out of Germany 
and somewhere in Africa?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand the Department has just completed a study 
that compares the costs and benefits of moving the AFRICOM 
headquarters. In the end Secretary Panetta considered both cost and 
operational factors and decided to keep the headquarters in Stuttgart, 
Germany. When assessing possible relocation to the African continent 
the Department considered the difficulties in determining a 
representative country on such a diverse continent, diplomatic 
challenges, high costs of infrastructure, security concerns and 
mobility and access challenges. It was decided that a move to the 
African continent was not feasible at this time.

                 budget cuts and operational readiness
    189. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, you stated in responses to 
questions posed by the committee in regard to the Joint Chief's 
concerns about a hollow force that ``the concerns the Joint Chiefs have 
expressed about readiness come from a variety of factors, including the 
challenges of recovering from 10 years of operational stress, of 
transitioning to a broader range of operations, and of doing all of 
this in the face of fiscal austerity and budget uncertainty.'' How do 
you plan to monitor risk and the potential mismatch between constrained 
resources and demands of operational plans?
    Mr. Hagel. I am deeply impressed by the caliber and capabilities of 
our military forces. It is vitally important that they be ready to 
respond to the Nation's needs, and I am concerned that further budget 
cuts will negatively affect readiness. If confirmed, I will get regular 
updates by the Joint Chiefs on where we must devote the Department's 
attention and resources to ensure the readiness of the force.

    190. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you believe there currently 
exists a mismatch between readiness requirements and military strategy 
when assessing the resources available? Please explain.
    Mr. Hagel. Maintaining ready forces is a priority. If confirmed, I 
will work with the Joint Chiefs to better understand the basis of their 
assessment and how we can most effectively address the readiness 
challenges our military faces.
    My sense is that the concerns the Joint Chiefs have expressed about 
readiness come from a variety of factors, including the challenges of 
recovering from 10 years of operational stress, of transitioning to a 
broader range of operations, and of doing all of this in the face of 
fiscal austerity and budget uncertainty. If confirmed, I will carefully 
monitor how all of these factors are posing risks to readiness and will 
work closely with the military and civilian leadership of the 
Department to mitigate those risks to the greatest extent possible.

    191. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, as to the mitigation of risk of a 
hollow force, do you believe the President will provide you the 
discretion to request higher defense budgets than are currently 
proposed by the administration over the next 10 years?
    Mr. Hagel. I will always give the President my most honest and 
informed opinion about all necessary requirements for America's 
national security.
    I understand the administration has developed Strategic Guidance 
consistent with the funding limits of the budget control act. Any 
changes to those limits, such as sequestration, will cause a dramatic 
change in the force and require a different strategy or different 
resources. Additionally, unexpected demands for forces will likely 
result in a request for additional funding, as they always have.

         geographic risk posed by the revised military strategy
    192. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, in your response to the committee 
on a question regarding the revised military strategy announced by the 
President in the wake of the administration's decision to cut defense 
budgets by $487 billion over 10 years, you state: ``By emphasizing the 
Asia-Pacific while also focusing on the Middle East, rebalancing will 
necessarily accept risk in other areas given the resource-constrained 
environment.'' How do you believe the President's military strategy is 
taking risks in regions other than Asia and the Middle East?
    Mr. Hagel. By prioritizing resources for Asia and the Middle East, 
the current defense strategy accepts some risk in terms of the 
military's ability to address security challenges elsewhere. I believe 
this risk is manageable at the levels of defense spending provided for 
in the Budget Control Act. Regardless of where U.S. military forces may 
be positioned or stationed, one of the key advantages of our military 
is that we can bring to bear effective capabilities where needed to 
address threats to our interests. If confirmed, I would work with the 
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Services to ensure that 
readiness is one of our top priorities, so that our forces are ready to 
respond to the full range of contingencies that may threaten our key 
interests.

    193. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what specifically are the risks for 
Africa and South America?
    Mr. Hagel. In Africa, partner states accept a greater share of the 
burden to counter the growing capacity of violent extremist 
organizations and ensure regional stability. While we believe this 
African-led approach manages the threats to U.S. interests, the limited 
defense capacities of most African states and the modest investments in 
the African security sector are a source of risk. In South America, 
transnational criminal organizations undermine peace and security 
across the region and into the United States. As in Africa, partner 
states in South America will accept a greater share of the burden to 
address transnational criminal organizations.

    194. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, why do you believe this risk is 
necessary?
    Mr. Hagel. Not all problems are best met with military tools. Many 
of our national security objectives around the world, and notably in 
Africa and South America, are best secured through diplomacy and 
economic development. I believe DOD's current strategic approach 
balances the risk of overwhelming these two regions with U.S. military 
presence with the need to be ready to respond to crises that may emerge 
there, using globally agile forces.

    195. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what do you believe was lacking in 
our military strategy for Asia that required a rebalancing?
    Mr. Hagel. As the United States draws down from more than a decade 
of war in Afghanistan, we face an inflection point allowing for a 
transition from fighting today's wars to preparing for tomorrow's 
challenges. The President has been clear that U.S. economic and 
security interests are inextricably tied to the Asia-Pacific. The 
emerging economic and political dynamism in the Asia-Pacific requires 
strong and continuous U.S. commitment and the rebalance is a whole-of-
government effort to renew and deepen U.S. engagement throughout the 
region. The rebalance will inform the allocation of activities and 
resources to the Asia-Pacific, where the Department will contribute to 
peace and prosperity in the region. If confirmed, I will continue the 
Department's efforts and activities to seek greater engagement with 
allies and partners to build capacity for security cooperation, build 
mutual trust, understanding, and norms among countries in the region.

    196. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what does rebalancing mean for the 
U.S. military effort in the Asia-Pacific region in terms of force 
structure changes, additional or modified military capabilities, and 
defense budget modifications?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will focus on strengthening our 
relationships, building the capacity of key allies and partners, as 
well as maintaining the United States' ability to deter conflict and 
respond to any potential contingencies in the Asia-Pacific region. The 
rebalance renews emphasis on air and naval forces while maintaining 
distributed ground forces. The rebalance also requires the Department 
to develop new capabilities in order to maintain a technological edge, 
our freedom of action, and ability to project power in the region. I 
would work closely with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Services, and Office 
of the Secretary of Defense leadership to assess any additional changes 
in resources, force structure, equipment, and training.

    197. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the January 2012 Defense Strategic 
Guidance says that ``our posture in Europe must evolve.'' What is your 
assessment of the specific programs and strategic efforts that DOD is 
executing, or has planned, to evolve our posture in Europe?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the Department's current approach to posture 
in Europe and its emphasis on maintaining our Article 5 commitments to 
Allied security and promoting enhanced capacity and interoperability 
for coalition operations. For instance, I strongly support ongoing 
efforts related to the European Phased Adaptive Approach, the 
establishment of an aviation detachment in Poland, and enhanced 
training and exercises with European allies and partners through 
rotational deployments from the United States. All of these efforts 
introduce more modern capabilities appropriate for future challenges 
and demonstrate our commitment to NATO and the strength of the 
Alliance.

    198. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, how do you believe our evolving 
force posture in Europe will affect our commitment to NATO?
    Mr. Hagel. The Department's evolving defense posture in Europe 
focuses on enhancing interoperability and training and introducing 
modern capabilities more appropriate for future challenges. These 
evolutions demonstrate our commitment to NATO and the strength of the 
Alliance. Regardless of the rebalance, NATO is already adapting to meet 
new and emerging threats, to acquire the core enabling capabilities 
needed to respond to the full range of contingencies, and to better 
align U.S. and NATO training and education efforts in order to solidify 
and maintain the gains realized from having operated together in 
Afghanistan. As Secretary Panetta has said, ``Europe is our security 
partner of choice for military operations and diplomacy around the 
world.'' Our investment in Europe is, therefore, crucial.

                         iran ministry support
    199. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, Iran's Foreign Ministry was quoted 
as being hopeful your appointment would improve relations between 
Tehran and the United States ``We hope that practical changes will be 
created in the U.S. foreign policy and the U.S. officials' approach 
will change to respect the Nations' rights. We hope that the U.S. 
officials will favor peace instead of warmongering and recognize the 
rights of nations instead of interfering in the countries' internal 
affairs.''
    You stated in October 2009 that ``President Obama's approach to 
achieving a Middle East peace is connected to other vital regional and 
global issues--like helping forge an emerging Arab consensus on peace, 
combating terrorism, and future relationships with Iran and Syria. 
These issues are all in the long-term interests of Israel, the U.S., 
the Middle East, and the world.''
    In describing the President's approach, what specifically were you 
referring to regarding future relationships with Iran and Syria?
    Mr. Hagel. While I cannot speak to the motivations of the Iranian 
Foreign Ministry spokesperson behind making those statements, there 
should be no doubt that I fully support and--if confirmed--will 
faithfully execute the President's multi-vector strategy towards Iran. 
This strategy has included tough-minded diplomacy, crippling sanctions, 
and serious contingency planning with the objective of preventing Iran 
from acquiring a nuclear weapon.
    My comments in 2009 reflected my support for the President's use of 
diplomacy as an effective tool of statecraft. This approach allowed the 
United States to test the intentions of the regimes in Iran and Syria, 
expose them before the world, and when they failed to seize the 
opportunities presented to them, build a global coalition against them.

    200. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, how would these relationships with 
these two terrorist regimes be in the long-term interests of Israel and 
the United States?
    Mr. Hagel. Much has changed since 2009 in Iran and Syria. With that 
in mind, I believe that only after there is a change in regime in Syria 
and serious changes in the regime's behavior in Tehran, can we 
conceivably think about long-term relationships with these two 
countries that could be beneficial to the interests of the United 
States and the State of Israel. At the same time, I think the United 
States should continue to reach out to the people of Syria and Iran--as 
the best long-term investment for our and Israel's interests. Both 
societies are tremendously important to the stability of a region that 
is of great interest to the United States.

    201. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, how would you assess the success of 
the President's approach to date in the region?
    Mr. Hagel. I think the President's approach to the region has had 
some great success during the first term. President Obama responsibly 
drew down our presence in Iraq, crippled al Qaeda, isolated and 
weakened Iran, strongly supported the security of the State of Israel, 
and focused on transforming our relationship with peoples of the 
region, while advancing our core interests. That said, much remains to 
be done during the second term, and--if confirmed--I look forward to 
advancing our interests in the vitally important region of the Middle 
East.

                              north korea
    202. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, you wrote that ``Kim Jon Il's 
government is a genuinely rogue regime whose nuclear ambitions and 
capacity for mischief have been more or less contained, though 
imperfectly, through the U.N. and a mature diplomatic structure that 
includes the United States, Russia, China, Japan and South Korea.''
    Given North Korea's ballistic missile launch in December and recent 
threats to conduct further nuclear testing, do you still think that the 
diplomatic structure is effectively containing North Korean nuclear 
ambitions?
    Mr. Hagel. North Korea's December Taepo Dong II missile launch and 
recent threats to conduct a third nuclear test underscore the growing 
North Korean threat to international peace and security. U.S. 
diplomatic efforts following the December missile launch, particularly 
with China, resulted in U.N. Security Council Resolution 2087, which 
affirms the international community's opposition to North Korea's 
provocations. The tightened sanctions in the resolution will help 
impede the growth of North Korea's weapons of mass destruction program. 
If confirmed, I will continue to ensure our military provides the 
deterrence and defense necessary to protect our allies and our 
interests. This posture is also the best way to create conditions where 
diplomacy has the best possible prospects to succeed.

    203. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you see the future force 
structure of U.S. forces in Korea decreasing below the current size?
    Mr. Hagel. To secure peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula 
and in Northeast Asia, it is important that the United States and the 
Republic of Korea (ROK) maintain a robust combined defense posture. If 
confirmed, I will work with ROK leadership to ensure that the United 
States maintains an appropriately sized and ready force to respond to 
evolving threats in the region.

    204. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you think any capabilities need 
to be added to our force structure in the Asia-Pacific theater to 
ensure regional stability in light of increased North Korean 
belligerence?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will maintain the U.S. commitment to the 
defense of the ROK using globally available U.S. forces and 
capabilities that can be deployed to augment the combined defense in 
case of crisis. If confirmed, I would ensure that we have the 
capabilities necessary to deter, and, if necessary, defeat, North 
Korean aggression.

                                 taiwan
    205. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, tensions in the Asia-Pacific have 
increased significantly due to more aggressive posturing of China in 
places like Scarborough Reef and the Senkaku Islands as China continues 
to pursue increased military capabilities. Do you fully support the 
Taiwan Relations Act of 1979?
    Mr. Hagel. I fully support the Taiwan Relations Act. In my view, 
the increasing complexity and sophistication of the military threat to 
Taiwan from China increasingly means that Taiwan must devote greater 
attention to asymmetric concepts and innovative technologies to 
maximize Taiwan's strengths and advantages. If confirmed, I would work 
closely with Congress, the Commander of U.S. Pacific Command, and our 
interagency partners to ensure the continued effective implementation 
of all of the relevant provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act.

    206. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do you support the sale of F-16C/Ds 
to Taiwan, why or why not?
    Mr. Hagel. With respect to advanced fighter sales, I believe that 
we should make available to Taiwan those military capabilities that 
would allow the Taiwan Armed Forces to execute its missions effectively 
not only for today, but well into the future. If confirmed, I will look 
at what specific capabilities those are--or should be--in light of the 
security situation in the Taiwan Strait and the evolving military 
capabilities on the mainland. In addition, if confirmed, I will work 
with the Commander of U.S. Pacific Command to identify appropriate 
military training and exercise opportunities that will advance U.S. 
interests, enhance Taiwan's defense capabilities, and contribute to 
peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

    207. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, would you support the sale of F-35s 
to Taiwan?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #206.

    208. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, how would you strengthen the U.S. 
security relations with Taiwan?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that the Taiwan Relations Act has contributed to 
peace and stability in the region for over 30 years. In my view, the 
increasing complexity and sophistication of the military threat to 
Taiwan from China means that Taiwan must devote greater attention to 
asymmetric concepts and innovative technologies to maximize Taiwan's 
strengths and advantages. If confirmed, I would work closely with 
Congress, the Commander, PACOM, and our interagency partners to ensure 
the continued effective implementation of all of the relevant 
provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act. I believe that we should make 
available to Taiwan military capabilities that would allow the Taiwan 
Armed Forces to execute its missions effectively not only for today, 
but well into the future. If confirmed, I will look at what specific 
capabilities those are--or should be--in light of the security 
situation in the Taiwan Strait and the evolving military capabilities 
on the mainland. In addition, if confirmed, I will work with the 
Commander, PACOM to identify appropriate military training and exercise 
opportunities that will advance U.S. interests, enhance Taiwan's 
defense capabilities, and contribute to peace and stability in the 
Taiwan Strait.

    209. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, does the United States need to 
maintain a two carrier presence in the Pacific at all times and can 
this be done if sequestration goes into effect?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will work with the Secretary of the 
Navy, Joint Chiefs of Staff, and U.S. Pacific Command to ensure that we 
allocate our naval resources at the level of presence necessary to 
support our strategic goals, striking a balance between carrier 
presence in the Pacific Ocean and other regions. The current budget 
uncertainty, combined with ongoing high demand in the Gulf, has made 
sustaining two carriers in the Pacific challenging; further significant 
cuts in the defense budget would make it, extraordinarily difficult 
especially if preserving other U.S. interests--particularly Gulf 
presence.

          support for israeli security and regional stability
    210. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, given the high demand and low 
density of our missile defense assets globally, do you support the 
allocation of a TPY-2 radar and a BMD-capable ship to the defense of 
Israel?
    Mr. Hagel. I support strong missile defense cooperation with 
Israel, including the deployment of the U.S. TPY-2 radar and 
operational cooperation and support, including ship-based. In addition, 
the United States and Israel have a long history of cooperative 
research and development on missile defense. If confirmed, I will 
continue to support a robust missile defense cooperative relationship 
with Israel.

                                  iran
    211. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, will a two-carrier presence in the 
Gulf be sustainable given expected severe defense budget cuts?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that it is critical that the U.S. military 
maintain a robust presence in the region to counter Iran, reassure our 
partners, and build partner capacity. Our carrier presence is a key 
element of this presence. If confirmed, I will work with the combatant 
commanders to revalidate our posture and ensure it best addresses the 
threats, challenges, and opportunities in the region to preserve all 
options for the President while balancing other national security 
needs. Current budget uncertainty and further significant cuts in the 
defense budget would make sustaining this critical Gulf presence, and 
preserving other U.S. interests, extraordinarily difficult.

    212. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, do we have enough missile defense 
assets in the Middle East to adequately protect our partners and allies 
from an Iranian ballistic missile attack?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the phased adaptive approach takes the 
appropriate steps to protect our interests in the region. If confirmed, 
I will make it a priority to assess the adequacy of our missile defense 
posture in the Middle East to protect our deployed forces, allies, and 
partners from attack, and will seek adjustments as appropriate. I will 
also work to strengthen our cooperative relationships in the Middle 
East, and encourage our partners to continue to make investments in 
missile defense.

                 listening to commanders on the ground
    213. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, our commanders on the ground in 
both Iraq and Afghanistan asked for a surge to achieve national 
security objectives - and you disagreed with both of them.
    How much weight will you give your combat commanders on the ground 
when you make future decisions or recommendations to the President?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I would of course place great weight on 
the assessments and recommendations of combatant commanders and theater 
commanders on how best to achieve our military and national security 
objectives in their theater. If confirmed, it would be my 
responsibility to weigh their recommendations against global risk and 
force posture, and to offer that judgment to the President alongside 
theirs. If confirmed, I will honor the principles, enshrined in law, 
that allow the Chairman and the Joint Chiefs of Staff to voice their 
best military advice to the President. I will continue to foster an 
environment that welcomes critical thinking and diversity of views from 
theater commanders, combatant commanders, and the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff, as better and wiser strategic choices will result.

                              russia reset
    214. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, the administration has made major 
efforts towards resetting our relationship with Russia. However, on 
major issues such as Syria, Russia remains uncooperative. What is your 
assessment of the reset with Russia with respect to military-to-
military relations?
    Mr. Hagel. Although we do not see eye-to-eye with Russia on every 
issue, there are many areas of cooperation that have been positive, 
including transit into and out of Afghanistan, support on sanctions 
against Iran, and increased transparency on military reform and 
modernization.

    215. Senator Inhofe. Mr. Hagel, what areas do you see for future 
increased military cooperation with Russia?
    Mr. Hagel. The enhanced bilateral military relationship we have 
developed with Russia under the reset is worthwhile. If confirmed, I 
would seek to continue it, while considering what adjustments may be 
needed. My understanding is that DOD has been pursuing several areas of 
increased cooperation with Russia, with a focus on developing 
transparency by providing a reliable and predictable channel of 
communications between our militaries. If confirmed, I would seek to 
increase U.S. consultations with Russia on its internal defense reform 
efforts, such as modern military recruitment, compensation and benefits 
systems, and developing noncommissioned officers. Assisting the Russian 
military to enact reforms in these areas will help make it a more 
confident, secure and stable organization. If confirmed, I would also 
seek to pursue cooperation with Russia on strategic issues critical to 
both of our Nations, such as counterterrorism and missile defense.
                                 ______
                                 
               Questions Submitted by Senator John McCain
                              afghanistan
    216. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, in an interview with the Financial 
Times on August 29, 2011, you are quoted as saying, ``I disagreed with 
President Obama, his decision to surge in Afghanistan, as I did with 
President Bush on the surge in Iraq.'' Do you unequivocally stand by 
your statement that you disagreed with President Obama's decision to 
surge troops in Afghanistan?
    Mr. Hagel. I did disagree with President Obama's decision to surge 
troops to Afghanistan. Notwithstanding any past differences in view, if 
confirmed, I will work with our military commanders and Joint Chiefs to 
ensure that President Obama has the best possible advice in developing 
and implementing a strategy that best protects our national interests.

    217. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, do you advocate the full withdrawal 
of U.S. forces by the end of 2014?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the President's plan to transition full 
security responsibility to the Afghan National Security Forces by the 
end of 2014, and to retain an enduring commitment in the future. As the 
President has stated, a residual force after 2014 would focus on two 
primary missions: to deny safe haven to al Qaeda and its affiliates; 
and to train, advise, and assist the Afghan forces so they can maintain 
their own security. I further support the President's position that any 
residual U.S. force would have to be at the invitation of the Afghan 
Government and would need to be guaranteed certain legal protections, 
which will be negotiated under the Bilateral Security Agreement.

                                 syria
    218. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, more than 60,000 Syrians have been 
killed in some 22 months of conflict between the rebels and the Assad 
regime. You are quoted in an August 29, 2011, interview with the 
Financial Times, as saying, ``I think Syria, the outcome there has far 
more important consequences for America's national interests than 
Libya.'' Should the United States provide at least the same level of 
support to anti-Assad forces as we provided to anti-Qaddafi forces?
    Mr. Hagel. I continue to believe that the United States has 
significant national security stakes in the outcome in Syria. I believe 
that the steps taken by the administration to date, including 
political, diplomatic and economic pressure, as well as assisting the 
unarmed opposition, have been appropriate. If confirmed I will support 
the President's ongoing reassessment of the continuously changing 
dynamics on the ground in Syria, to determine what additional steps may 
be appropriate.

    219. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, are U.S. forces capable of 
executing, without operational support from international partners, no 
fly zones in Syria?
    Mr. Hagel. While I have not been briefed in detail on U.S. 
capabilities for such a mission, I am confident that the U.S. military 
could enforce a no-fly zone over Syria. However, because Syria has an 
advanced air defense network, I understand that such a mission could 
involve a significant number of and risk to U.S. forces.

    220. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the United States 
should deny Assad his use of air power?
    Mr. Hagel. The President has said Assad must go, and a democratic 
political transition should remain our goal. If confirmed, I will 
support the current focus on weakening the Assad regime through 
political, diplomatic, and economic pressure, as well as assisting the 
unarmed opposition. Regarding any additional options, military and non-
military, if confirmed, I will support the President's continuing 
reassessment of what additional steps may be appropriate.

    221. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the United States 
should provide arms, intelligence, or other military support to Syrian 
rebels?
    Mr. Hagel. I do not believe that providing lethal support to the 
armed opposition at this time would improve the terrible situation in 
Syria; however, this question should continue to be re-evaluated over 
time. The Syrian people are in urgent need of assistance during this 
difficult period, and the United States is helping to address those 
basic needs by providing medical assistance, humanitarian assistance, 
and political support on the international stage.

                                  iraq
    222. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, do you regard the 2007 Iraq surge 
as a mistake?
    Mr. Hagel. When former President Bush announced his decision to 
surge troops to Iraq in 2007, I was against it. I thought the Bush 
administration had not defined a clear end state for the war in Iraq, 
and under these circumstances I did not believe that adding more U.S. 
troops was worth the likely cost in American lives. It is now clear 
that a combination of steps including the surge, improved counter-
terrorism techniques, and the Anbar Awakening, contributed to reducing 
violence in Iraq. The cost of the surge in American lives was almost 
1,200 dead and thousands wounded. What is still not clear, however, is 
what role the surge played relative to the other steps that we took, or 
what would have happened if we had not undertaken the surge; those are 
questions for historians.

    223. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, could the other factors that 
contributed to the stability of Iraq circa 2007, such as the Anbar 
Awakening, have succeeded without the surge?
    Mr. Hagel. The Anbar Awakening was an important development--along 
with the Shia militant ceasefire--that was a result of the decision of 
the Iraqi people to take back their country from extremist forces. Many 
of the Anbar Awakening tribes fought alongside our troops, and they 
should be commended for their efforts. Over 100,000 young Sunis were 
paid by the United States between $350 and $500 per month of helping 
us. Our troops benefited from the Awakening and in turn the Awakening 
forces were further bolstered by the support offered by our troops. But 
ultimately, it is difficult to make a judgment on the causal 
relationship between the surge and the Anbar Awakening. Again, this 
will be a question best reserved for history to make an ultimate 
judgment.

    224. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, you advocated the complete 
withdrawal of all U.S. forces from Iraq by 2011, rather than 
negotiating an agreement for an enduring presence of U.S. forces. The 
President ultimately did exactly what you recommended--reportedly 
against the advice of his military leaders. Do you believe that Iraq is 
more stable and better off today as a result?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, I fully supported the withdrawal of all U.S. combat 
forces from Iraq by December 2011 in accordance with the November 2008 
U.S.-Iraq Security Agreement. It was the right decision and it gave the 
Iraqis the chance to take full ownership and responsibility for their 
country. Iraq is better off today because of it. The drawdown has 
allowed us to chart a new path in our strategic partnership with a 
sovereign Iraq based on mutual interests and mutual respect.
    While Iraq is a better place today, it is clear that Iraq has a 
long way to go to move beyond a history of violence and instability. 
Iraq continues to face security challenges, but our focus must be on 
the future. A normalized relationship between our two countries, based 
on mutual respect and mutual interests, is the best way to advance 
U.S., Iraqi, and regional interests. If confirmed, I will continue 
Secretary Panetta's work to strengthen our military-to-military 
relationship with Iraq, and further its re-integration into the region.

                               dod budget
    225. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, if additional resources are 
necessary to meet our national security needs, would you advocate for a 
restoration of some of the $487 billion the President plans to cut from 
future defense budgets?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will work with the President, OMB, and 
Congress to provide the military capability necessary to defend our 
Nation. I recognize that the Budget Control Act of 2011 requires that 
to be done within constrained resources. I believe we can defend the 
Nation within those limits. If confirmed, I would expect to consult 
with the President and Congress as circumstances change. However, I do 
believe that if significant multi-year reductions in funding take place 
(such as those required by sequestration), the Department would need to 
revise the defense strategy.

    226. Mr. Hagel, do you agree with former Secretary of Defense 
Robert Gates that a 10 percent, or approximately $50 billion, cut to 
defense spending in 1 year ``operationally would be catastrophic''?
    Mr. Hagel. As both Secretaries Gates and Panetta repeatedly stated, 
sequestration--both the size and the arbitrary manner of these cuts--
would be devastating to the Department. It would harm military 
readiness and disrupt each and every investment program. Based on my 
assessment to date, I share their concern. I urge Congress to eliminate 
the sequester threat permanently and pass a balanced deficit-reduction 
plan.

                    force structure and end strength
    227. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, do you support the President's plan 
to reduce military force structure over the next few years, including 
reducing Army end strength to approximately 490,000 soldiers by 2017?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will be committed to maintaining the 
best Army in the world--capable and ready--an Army that will support 
the mission requirements associated with our defense strategy. In the 
future our Army will not be sized for large-scale, long-duration 
stability operations, but instead have the agility to respond where the 
Nation needs it. I support an Army that is sized according to the 
defense strategy and the mission requirements that support that 
strategy.

    228. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, given our poor track record of 
predicting future requirements for ground forces, what do you believe 
to be the justification for reducing the size of the Army and Marine 
Corps so dramatically?
    Mr. Hagel. Our force structure and end strength levels should 
support the overall national security and defense strategies. The 
defense strategy places emphasis on a smaller, leaner force that is 
agile, flexible, and ready to deploy quickly; not a force that is sized 
for large, protracted stability operations. You are right that we have 
a poor track record in predicting the future. But we have shown that we 
can rapidly grow our ground forces, if necessary. We also plan to 
preserve readiness in our Reserve Forces.

    229. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, the President has exempted military 
personnel accounts from cuts related to budget sequestration. Do you 
agree that cutting training and equipment funding without proportional 
cuts to military personnel accounts will lead to a hollow force?
    Mr. Hagel. In general, I agree that we must maintain the right 
balance of end-strength, modernization, and training to guard against a 
hollow force. However, in the case of the blunt instrument of 
sequestration, I support the President's exemption of military 
personnel accounts in fiscal year 2013 due to the fact that across-the-
board reductions would be inadvisable for the morale of the force and 
not cost-effective.

    230. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, in the context of overall budget 
reductions, not specifically budget sequestration, would you recommend 
curtailing civilian personnel by amounts proportional to cuts made to 
the military personnel accounts?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that Secretary Panetta has directed an 
internal scrub to see where savings can be made in civilian personnel 
accounts. To me this is a prudent review, and something the Department 
should do continuously. However, it is not clear that a reduction of a 
certain percentage of uniform personnel can be met with a corresponding 
reduction in civilian personnel. The two serve different functions, and 
in some cases, for example cyber efforts, we foresee a growth in 
civilian personnel. But if confirmed, this is an area I intend to look 
at closely.

    231. Senator McCain. Mr. Hagel, do you intend to comply with 
section 955 of the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013, which directs savings in 
civilian personnel and service contractor workforces of DOD?
    Mr. Hagel. If I am confirmed, I will ensure the Department complies 
with section 955.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator Saxby Chambliss
                      gulf region military posture
    232. Senator Chambliss. Mr. Hagel, in hindsight it appears your 
assessment was wrong on both the effectiveness of the Iraq surge and on 
our method of withdrawal. Some argue that our departure from Iraq and 
our subsequent disengagement have opened the door to greater Iranian 
influence in Iraq and strengthened Teheran's position in the Middle 
East. What alterations, if any, are necessary to our military force 
posture in the Gulf Region to deter Iranian regional ambitions and 
support international diplomatic efforts to stop Iran's effort to 
acquire nuclear weapons?
    Mr. Hagel. In my view, our military posture in the Middle East 
region remains strong and is a critical component of the President's 
multi-vector strategy to ensure Iran does not acquire a nuclear weapon. 
If confirmed, I will continue to work with the Joint Chiefs and the 
CENTCOM Commander to ensure that the Department is fully prepared and 
adequately postured for any military contingencies in this critically 
important region, particularly with respect to Iran and the President's 
firm commitment to prevent it from acquiring a nuclear weapon.

                       military readiness depots
    233. Senator Chambliss. Mr. Hagel, Georgia is home to two of our 
critical defense depots--Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex and Marine 
Corps Logistics Base-Albany. One sequestration scenario directs the 
Military Services to cancel vital 3rd and 4th quarter depot-level 
maintenance activities. This will have an immediate and lasting impact 
on military readiness and make it difficult to recover a force that has 
seen combat for the better part of 2 decades. Furthermore, thousands of 
highly-skilled workers would lose their jobs; and thousands of hours 
would be lost for flight time, drive time, and repairs that would 
ensure our military's equipment is ready when the Nation calls upon 
them. Describe in detail how you will ensure that depots accomplish 
their mission and not lose the continuity that is vital to the success 
of our force readiness if sequestration occurs.
    Mr. Hagel. The work done by the skilled workforce at our defense 
depots is critical to the Defense Department. I agree with Secretary 
Panetta that the effects of sequestration will be devastating and will 
lead to a decline in military readiness. If confirmed, I will work with 
the Secretaries of the Military Departments, Joint Chiefs, and Military 
Services to sustain readiness as best we can. However, this will be 
extremely difficult given the impact of sequestration, especially when 
combined with the effects of a year-long Continuing Resolution. If 
sequestration occurs, it will likely not be possible to keep our depots 
fully operating, and this will impact our future readiness.

                      general/flag officer reform
    234. Senator Chambliss. Mr. Hagel, historically, during military 
draw-downs, enlisted personnel percentages take the brunt of the 
attrition while a disproportionate amount of general and flag officers 
remain in place. It seems we have an excessive number of general 
officers in the ranks. If confirmed, will you take a closer look at the 
number of general/flag officer authorizations in the military and the 
size of their support staffs?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that the Track Four Efficiency Study, 
initiated by Secretary Gates and continued by Secretary Panetta, 
identified both Service and joint general and flag officer positions 
for elimination, realignment, or reduction. Execution of these 
modifications is planned to continue over the next 2 years.
    If confirmed, I would support continued efforts to ensure we 
maintain the appropriate level of leadership across our joint force, 
seeking efficiencies as mission and force structure changes allow.

                      dod financial accountability
    235. Senator Chambliss. Mr. Hagel, in the current fiscal 
environment it is imperative that we maintain proper financial 
accountability in DOD. DOD is required to have an auditable financial 
statement by 2017, an objective that Secretary Panetta accelerated to 
2014. What specific steps would you take for DOD to reach this goal by 
that date?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree financial management improvement is an important 
priority and support the Department's current plan to have the 
budgetary statement ready for audit by 2014 and the full set of 
statements ready by 2017. If confirmed, I intend to review the 
Department's progress with my senior leadership team on a regular basis 
and work through them to remove any institutional barriers to achieving 
this goal.

             post-2014 afghan bilateral security agreement
    236. Senator Chambliss. Mr. Hagel, under the strategic partnership 
agreement signed by the United States and Afghanistan in May 2012, both 
countries are obligated to negotiate a bilateral security agreement 
within 1 year. The talks will set conditions for U.S. forces in 
Afghanistan after 2014 as part of a train, advise, and assist mission. 
Oversight is key for this process to be successful. We owe it to our 
military forces to have an organized, methodical plan in order to not 
squander the incredible effort expended by the United States in 
Afghanistan. Will you ensure that Congress is involved in the 
development process with the bilateral security agreement so that the 
administration is not planning in a potentially disastrous vacuum?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree on the importance of the Bilateral Security 
Agreement (BSA) for setting the parameters for our forces in 
Afghanistan after 2014 and with the need to maintain regular 
communication with Congress as the BSA negotiations proceed. If 
confirmed, I will support the administration's sustained engagement 
with Congress throughout the Bilateral Security Agreement negotiation 
process.

    237. Senator Chambliss. Mr. Hagel, from your viewpoint, what 
conditions need to be set in a post-2014 Afghanistan with U.S. and 
coalition involvement for the Afghanistan Government to continue to be 
successful?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that improvements in security conditions, 
enabled by continued development of the Afghan National Security 
Forces, will continue to be critical. Good governance, including 
sustained efforts to end corruption, is also important to ensure that 
security gains result in sustainable Afghan self-reliance and 
governance. Regional peace and deepened cooperation between Afghanistan 
and its neighbors will also be important for long-term success. If 
confirmed, I will monitor conditions in and around Afghanistan closely 
and will continue to assess progress in consultation with commanders on 
the ground and the Joint Chiefs, to ensure that we are helping to set 
the conditions for continued success in Afghanistan beyond 2014.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator Roger F. Wicker
                         use of military force
    238. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, in your responses to the advance 
policy questions, you state that one of the key lessons learned from 
the Iraq war is the need to think more carefully before using military 
force, especially regarding the need to plan for all phases of 
operations before beginning a preemptive conflict.
    You have stated repeatedly that the United States should keep all 
options on the table, to include the use of preemptive military force, 
to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. Some military theorists 
argue that such an attack, even if successful, has the potential to 
result in a variety of reactions from Iran, including direct attacks on 
U.S. and allied military forces, attempts to interrupt the flow of 
commerce through the Strait of Hormuz, and the use of Iranian special 
operations forces and proxies to conduct destabilizing operations in 
vulnerable regional countries. Arguably, the second and third order 
effects of such an attack would be far more widespread than those 
resulting from the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
    You also noted in your answers to the advance policy questions that 
you do not feel knowledgeable enough about how the U.S. military has 
implemented the lessons learned in Iraq and Afghanistan to make 
recommendations on additional changes. Why do you believe an attack on 
Iran is now a viable option, whereas in 2006, you felt differently?
    Mr. Hagel. I am fully committed to the President's policy of 
preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, and believe all 
options should be on the table to achieve that goal. A military attack 
on Iran would most likely have significant consequences, as you have 
described. But as I've also said, the military option should be the 
last option considered. However, a nuclear-armed Iran would have far-
reaching and unacceptable consequences on regional stability, and on 
the security of the United States.

    239. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, do you feel the U.S. military is 
adequately prepared to deal with the repercussions from a strike 
against Iranian nuclear facilities? If not, what changes would need to 
be implemented?
    Mr. Hagel. While I do not currently have access to the information 
needed to answer this question, I have great confidence that General 
Mattis, the Joint Chiefs, and Secretary Panetta have ensured that the 
U.S. military is prepared to deal with any repercussions from a strike 
against Iranian nuclear facilities. If confirmed, I will work with the 
CENTCOM Commander to refine planning as necessary over time, to ensure 
that our forces remain ready to take any actions the President directs 
and to defend themselves and the United States.

    240. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, how would you engage regional 
partners to limit the potential destabilizing effects of a strike on 
Iranian nuclear facilities?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will continue to promote and advance the 
Department's military-to-military and defense relations with our key 
partners in the region. These relationships are critical to advance 
U.S. strategic interests, including preventing Iran from acquiring a 
nuclear weapon, supporting the security of the State of Israel, and 
building the capacity of partner nations to meet common challenges and 
address future contingencies, if required.

    241. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, do you believe you possess the 
requisite knowledge about the state of the U.S. military and our allies 
and that you are ready now, given the current state of affairs with 
Iran, North Korea, and China, to effectively advise the President on 
the employment of U.S. military forces towards achieving U.S. strategic 
objectives?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. If confirmed, advising the President regarding the 
employment of military forces will be my most important duty. I believe 
I currently have the judgment and experience necessary to advise the 
President on such matters and have a clear understanding of the role of 
our military and alliances in achieving national security objectives. 
If confirmed, I will ensure that my first priority and responsibility 
is to match this prior experience with deeper knowledge of the current 
plans and capabilities of our military.

                       u.s. shipbuilding industry
    242. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, would you agree to 
work closely with this committee and with this Congress in addressing 
the urgent need to increase our shipbuilding rates?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    243. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you remain 
committed to ensuring that the vessels we build for our sailors and 
marines are the finest this Nation can produce and that you will never 
agree to procuring vessels that do not meet the current military 
classifications for warships?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I am committed to ensuring the Navy's 
fleet is appropriately sized and possesses the capabilities necessary 
to fulfill its role in defending U.S. interests both in peace and 
wartime. Recognizing the challenges faced within the Department of Navy 
to build and maintain an affordable and balanced fleet, I am committed 
to ensuring that survivability shall be addressed on all new surface 
ships, combat systems and equipment designs, overhauls, conversions, 
and modernizations in order that the design is provided a balance of 
survivability performance, risk, and cost within program objectives.

    244. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you agree to 
analyze all avenues of cost reduction in shipbuilding, including multi-
year procurements, block buys of material for multiple ships, and level 
loading the funding profiles to allow shipbuilders to optimize design 
and material procurement prior to the start of construction?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    245. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, can you provide a rationale for the 
Defense Logistics Agency's (DLA) move toward a proposed noncommercial 
model?
    Mr. Hagel. I don't have insight into the specifics of what the DLA 
proposed model is; however, it is my understanding that the DLA is 
looking at ways to strengthen its relationships with suppliers to 
mitigate contract risks. If confirmed, I will be able to look into the 
details of the specific objectives and actions.

    246. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, what additional oversight would 
such a model provide to ensure the prevention of waste, fraud, and 
abuse?
    Mr. Hagel. At this time I don't have insight into the DLA model. 
However I believe it is important that we have transparent contracting 
practices that reduce risk and prevent fraud, waste, and abuse.

                    taiwan and u.s.-china relations
    247. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, during an official visit to China 
in September 2012, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta extended an 
invitation to his Chinese counterpart, General Liang Guanglie on the 
People's Liberation Army's (PLA) participation in the biennial RIMPAC 
in 2014. RIMPAC is the world's largest international maritime warfare 
exercise, which in 2012 involved over 40 ships and submarines, more 
than 200 aircraft, and 25,000 personnel from more than 20 countries 
from the Pan Pacific region.
    The Taiwan Strait has long been a potential flashpoint in the 
region. Taiwan, one of America's important strategic allies in the 
region, has been constantly under the threat of a growing PLA. If the 
PLA is to be invited to RIMPAC, I believe we should consider involving 
Taiwan as well. Would you consider inviting Taiwan's navy to 
participate in RIMPAC?
    Mr. Hagel. The United States is firm in its commitment to Taiwan's 
self-defense needs under the Taiwan Relations Act. That relationship 
includes defense exchanges and other interactions consistent with our 
unofficial relationship and as provided for in the Taiwan Relations 
Act. If confirmed, I will work to identify appropriate exchanges and 
interactions to assist Taiwan's defense capabilities, and contribute to 
peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

    248. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act and 
the Six Assurances of 1982 have contributed to the peace and stability 
of the Asia-Pacific region for the past 3 decades. With the military 
balance--including air superiority--gradually shifting in China's 
favor, what are your plans to implement the security commitment the 
United States has for Taiwan under this framework?
    Mr. Hagel. In my view, the increasing complexity and sophistication 
of the military threat to Taiwan from China means that Taiwan must 
devote greater attention to asymmetric concepts and innovative 
technologies to maximize Taiwan's strengths and advantages. If 
confirmed, I would work closely with Congress, throughout DOD, and with 
our interagency partners to ensure the continued effective 
implementation of all of the relevant provisions of the Taiwan 
Relations Act.

    249. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, as Taiwan is likely to retire some 
of its older fighter aircraft in the next 5 to 10 years, do you believe 
that sales of advanced aircraft and submarines are an important next 
step in this commitment?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that we should make available to Taiwan those 
defense articles and defense services which enable Taiwan to maintain a 
sufficient self-defense capability, today and into the future. If 
confirmed, I will look at what specific capabilities those are--or 
should be--in light of the security situation in the Taiwan Strait and 
the evolving military capabilities on the mainland.

                         export control reform
    250. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, during his tenure as Secretary of 
Defense, Robert Gates championed export control reform. Specifically, 
he called for streamlining the foreign military sales, release, and 
disclosure processes. It is vital that our partners and allies have 
more certainty of timelines for delivery of critical defense articles 
and services; however, this is not always the case when our processes 
get bogged down. Is this something you will also champion if confirmed 
as Secretary of Defense?
    Mr. Hagel. I fully support the reform efforts because I believe 
they are absolutely necessary to meet 21st century national security 
challenges. Secretary Gates played a key role in setting the 
administration's export control reform objectives: a single list, a 
single licensing agency, a single primary enforcement coordination 
agency, and a single U.S. Government-wide information technology 
licensing system. The administration has made progress in this reform 
effort, but the work continues. DOD has been fully engaged in revising 
the U.S. Munitions List and I understand that it plans to continue to 
focus on completing this important work with our interagency partners 
to produce a list that is more transparent and predictable for 
government and industry and which focuses on protecting the most 
important technologies.
    I also fully support ongoing efforts within the Department to 
streamline and improve U.S. technology security and foreign disclosure 
processes so that decisions are made in a timely fashion and enable us 
to focus on the protection of the technologies that are most important, 
while providing important capabilities to our allies and partners. 
Finally, if confirmed, I would support implementation of the steps that 
the Department has taken to continue to improve the Foreign Military 
Sales process.

                          energy certification
    251. Senator Wicker. Mr. Hagel, section 2830 of the Military 
Construction Authorization Act for fiscal year 2012 requires DOD to 
submit to Congress a report on the cost effectiveness of certain green 
building standards. Part of the report by DOD found that the adoption 
of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certifications by 
certain departments of DOD is not the most cost effective practice for 
energy and water savings. As Secretary of Defense, what policies would 
you implement to ensure that DOD's green building policies meet the 
military's primary missions of energy and water savings and do not 
arbitrarily discriminate against American products such as domestic 
wood?
    Mr. Hagel. While I am not completely familiar with the different 
green building standards that are available, I do think we need to 
adhere to the general philosophy of minimizing life-cycle costs and 
incorporating features in building construction that result in reduced 
operating costs and lower utility bills. I will support policies to 
this effect. I will not support policies that arbitrarily discriminate 
against American products.
                                 ______
                                 
              Questions Submitted by Senator Kelly Ayotte
                   medium extended air defense system
    252. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, section 221 of the NDAA for Fiscal 
Year 2013 prohibits the use of any funding for Medium Extended Air 
Defense System (MEADS). Are you aware of this provision?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    253. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you ensure that 
DOD fully complies with this law?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department fully 
complies with this law.

    254. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, how much fiscal year 2012 MEADS 
funding remains unobligated and how much has been obligated/expended 
for MEADS under the terms of the Continuing Resolution?
    Mr. Hagel. It is my understanding that of the $390 million in the 
U.S. fiscal year 2012 funding provided to the NATO management office 
for MEADS, a total of $335 million has been fully obligated to fund 
data analysis, archiving the technology and design, capturing 
performance results, formal contract closeout; and if necessary for 
termination liabilities for contracts and/or subcontracts. $55 million 
of fiscal year 2012 funding was also provided to the U.S. Army for 
management and oversight of sensitive technologies in MEADS. The 
Department is consulting with our partners, Germany and Italy, in order 
to complete as much of the remaining design and development effort as 
possible while allowing for contract closeout. I understand that $210 
million of the total fiscal year 2012 funds has been expended as of 
February 1, 2013. No fiscal year 2013 funds are authorized and none 
have been obligated or expended under the CR.

    255. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, for what purpose were these funds 
obligated?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #254.

 joint land attack cruise missile defense elevated netted sensor system
    256. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, can you provide an update on the 
deployment status of Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated 
Netted Sensor System (JLENS)?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand JLENS is still in development, and that the 
Department recently completed a study on JLENS location and operational 
use. It is my understanding a JLENS deployment site was selected and 
planning is underway for preparing the site. If confirmed, I will 
review the status of these preparations with the Secretary of the Army 
and the Commander of U.S. Northern Command.

    257. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you commit to 
ensuring that JLENS will be deployed in a timely fashion?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #256.

    258. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what combatant commands have a 
validated requirement for JLENS or have expressed an interest in JLENS?
    Mr. Hagel. It is my understanding that because of the unique 
capabilities of JLENS to detect a range of air threats, CENTCOM, U.S. 
Southern Command, U.S. Pacific Command, and U.S. Northern Command have 
expressed interest in this capability.

                       f-35 joint strike fighter
    259. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your assessment of China 
and Russia's development of fifth generation fighters?
    Mr. Hagel. I have not reviewed the breadth of the programs in 
detail, but both China and Russia are pursuing advanced fighter 
aircraft. We are examining ways to respond to these efforts to upgrade 
their capabilities.

    260. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the F-35 JSF is 
necessary in an increasingly contested operating environment?
    Mr. Hagel. My view is we cannot let any nation achieve parity with 
the United States in our ability to control the air. I understand the 
F-35 will bring advanced capability to the warfighters in a contested 
environment and ensure the United States can act in our national 
interest around the globe.

    261. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you continue the 
development and procurement of the fifth generation JSF, including the 
Marine Corps variant?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will review the F-35 program, to include 
the Marine Corps variant, to ensure the aircraft are delivered with the 
capability we need and at a cost we can afford.

                       ballistic missile threats
    262. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, analysts have estimated that Iran 
may be capable of striking the CONUS with a ballistic missile by 2015. 
Do you agree with this assessment?
    Mr. Hagel. It is clear that Iran continues to pursue longer-range 
missiles and develop technology that could allow Iran to deploy an ICBM 
in the future. I believe that U.S. missile defenses must be prepared to 
defend the United States today and in the future against any potential 
threat posed by countries like Iran and North Korea.

    263. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, in light of this analysis, Congress 
included section 221 in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013. This section 
requires the Secretary of Defense to conduct a study that evaluates 
three possible additional locations in the United States, including two 
on the east coast, for future deployment of an interceptor to protect 
the Homeland against missile threats from countries such as North Korea 
and Iran. Are you aware of this reporting requirement?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    264. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, do you pledge to have 
the results of this study delivered to Congress within the timeframe 
outlined in section 221, as required by law?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will work to ensure that the study is 
delivered on time and that Congress remains informed about the 
Department's decisions about how to best protect the U.S. Homeland from 
this threat.

                         submarine requirements
    265. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you believe the Virginia payload 
module will mitigate some of the anticipated gap in undersea strike 
volume?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, although I understand that the cost to include this 
capability in the Virginia-class is a challenge to available 
shipbuilding resources.

    266. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what percent of combatant commander 
attack submarine requirements were met by the Navy in 2012?
    Mr. Hagel. I have been informed that the Navy has met approximately 
60 percent of the combatant commanders' total attack submarine 
requirements and 100 percent of the Secretary of Defense-approved 
Global Force Management Allocation Plan adjudicated requirement for 
Navy support since 2010. The Global Force Management process allows 
Navy to meet the combatant commanders' highest priority needs as 
determined by the Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs 
of Staff.

    267. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you support Congress' intent to 
build two Virginia-class submarines in 2014?
    Mr. Hagel. Submarines are critically important to our strategy and 
future; therefore, resources permitting, I would support plans to build 
two Virginia-class submarines in 2014.

                           electronic warfare
    268. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your view on the future of 
electronic warfare/electronic attack?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe the Electronic Warfare/Electronic Attack (EW/
EA) will play an increasingly important role in future military 
operations. It is both an enabler of U.S. operations and a capability 
that potential adversaries will exploit to counter the longstanding 
U.S. technological edge in weapon systems. Potential adversaries are 
pursuing more advanced battlefield systems, including EW/EA, to deny 
U.S. power projection capabilities and curtail our ability to maneuver, 
conduct precision strikes, and communicate effectively in a conflict 
scenario. Continued U.S. investment in EW/EA will be critical to 
ensuring that the United States can achieve its operational objectives 
in a timely manner and with a minimum of losses; EW/EA systems will 
also contribute to the deterrent effect that highly capable U.S. forces 
exert on potential adversaries.

    269. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you believe it still plays a 
vital role in our national security?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #268.

                         u.s.-russian relations
    270. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you agree that the United States 
should not initiate negotiations with Russia for a new arms treaty 
unless and until we can confirm that Russia is fully honoring existing 
arms treaties with the United States?
    Mr. Hagel. Compliance with legal obligations is central to the 
effectiveness of arms control treaties, and concerns about non-
compliance must be addressed. If confirmed, I will ensure that DOD 
works with the Department of State and other interagency partners in 
assessing and responding to any compliance concerns. While resolution 
of such issues with Russia is clearly important, I do not believe that 
discussions of possible further nuclear arms reductions need await 
resolution of all compliance issues.

    271. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, is Russia fully honoring all 
existing arms treaties with the United States?
    Mr. Hagel. I do not believe that the Russian Federation is fully 
honoring all of its obligations under existing arms control treaties. 
For example, Russia ceased implementing the Conventional Armed Forces 
in Europe Treaty in 2007.

                         patriot missile system
    272. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, section 226 of the NDAA for Fiscal 
Year 2013 requires the Secretary of the Army to submit a prioritized 
plan to Congress for the modernization of the Patriot missile system. 
Are you aware of this requirement?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    273. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you ensure that 
the Army delivers this plan within the timeframe outlined in section 
226, as required by law?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will work with the Secretary of the Army 
to ensure the Army delivers this plan as required by law.

                          overseas cemeteries
    274. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, are you aware that section 2857 in 
the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 requires DOD to designate a Federal or 
private agency to maintain base cemeteries before closing overseas 
military bases?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    275. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you ensure that 
this provision is adhered to, as required by law?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will carry out the direction given to 
the Department in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013.

                         mental health services
    276. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, are you aware that section 206 in 
the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 authorizes a DOD program to enhance DOD's 
research, treatment, education, and outreach initiatives focused on 
addressing the mental health needs of members of the National Guard and 
Reserve members?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    277. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you share my belief that DOD 
must address these needs?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I am deeply concerned about the mental health 
issues faced by our servicemembers and their families. If confirmed, I 
will be committed to providing the highest quality of mental health 
care and will comply with the provision in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 
2013.

                          budget auditability
    278. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, section 1005 in the NDAA for Fiscal 
Year 2013 that requires DOD to complete a full statement of budget 
resources by 2014, with the ultimate goal to be full auditability by 
2017. Are you aware of this requirement?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes. I understand that those commitments in our current 
plans have been included in the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013.

    279. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, do you commit to 
meeting this statutory requirement and to doing all that you can to 
promote good financial stewardship and financial transparency at DOD?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree financial management improvement is an important 
priority and support the Department's current plan to have the 
budgetary statement ready for audit by 2014 and the full set of 
statements ready by 2017. If confirmed, I will be committed to 
achieving this goal and will ensure that senior leaders remain focused 
on this goal and hold them accountable.

                       women in selective service
    280. Mr. Hagel, would you support requiring women to register for 
the Selective Service? Please explain your response.
    Mr. Hagel. I strongly believe all Americans should be able to serve 
in our Armed Forces to their maximum abilities. The Selective Service 
Act is administered by an agency outside of DOD. If I am confirmed, I 
will look forward to participating in any interagency consideration of 
selective service registration that may occur. We currently have an 
All-Volunteer Force that is the finest military in the world. I do not 
want to suggest that it would be necessary or advisable to restore the 
draft.

                     prostheses for servicemembers
    281. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, are the prostheses that our 
servicemembers are receiving after a severe injury the most advanced 
available on the U.S. market?
    Mr. Hagel. The care and support provided to our wounded, ill, and 
injured are key focus areas for the Department. I understand that the 
Department supports, along with the Department of Veterans Affairs, an 
Extremity Injury and Amputation Center of Excellence and that the 
standard and quality of care regarding prosthetics meets or exceeds 
what is provided in the private sector. I also understand that the 
Department supports a variety of research to ensure cutting edge 
technology is incorporated into addressing the issues for 
servicemembers with extremity amputations. This includes advanced 
research into tissue engineering and transplantation. If confirmed, I 
will continue to support these collective efforts to improve care.

    282. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if not, what actions are being 
taken to gain access to these prostheses for our servicemembers?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #281.

                 national guard youth challenge program
    283. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, the National Guard Youth Challenge 
Program (NGYCP) works to intervene in and reclaim the lives of at-risk 
youth by enhancing their skills, education, and self-discipline. The 
program has distinguished itself as an effective intervention in the 
lives of troubled young men and women. Over 110,000 students have 
graduated from 33 programs nationwide and a majority of these graduates 
earn their GED and are actively employed following graduation.
    The outstanding success enjoyed by the NGYCP is largely a result of 
the leadership and unique advantages the National Guard brings to the 
program. The program has also been successful because of the National 
Guard's emphasis on quality training for the staff.
    A 2012 RAND Corporation study highlighted the value of continued 
investment in the NGYCP. According to the report, the program earned 
$2.66 in social benefit from students graduating and becoming 
productive citizens for every $1 spent. Yet, only two cents of that 
original investment was spent on training the program staff.
    Based on the critical role training has played in this essential 
program's success, if confirmed, do you commit to examining funding for 
the NGYCP staff training to determine how it has changed over time and 
whether it is sufficient to maintain the quality of the program?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that training plays a large part in the 
success of the 100,000 cadets who have successfully completed this 
program. The Department continues to review ways in which to further 
improve the NGYCP's performance nationwide, including staff training. 
If confirmed, I will work closely with Reserve component leaders to 
evaluate funding for training and other resources.

                           guard and reserves
    284. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your view of the 
appropriate role of the Chief of the National Guard Bureau as a member 
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff?
    Mr. Hagel. The Chief of the National Guard Bureau serves as a full 
member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and as the principal advisor to the 
Secretary of Defense, through the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff, on matters involving non-Federalized National Guard forces.

    285. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your assessment of the 
Reserve and how it will fit into this new strategy of smaller, more 
lethal forces rotating into and out of many locations of strategic 
interest?
    Mr. Hagel. The Reserve components have served with distinction over 
more than a decade of war and continue to be a relevant and cost 
effective part of the Total Force. In a time of declining budgets and 
complex contingencies, I believe that the Department will continue to 
call on both Active and Reserve components to accomplish the domestic 
and overseas requirements of the new strategy. We are still in the 
process of finding the proper Active component/Reserve component mix 
that will most effectively accomplish our new strategy in a constrained 
fiscal environment.

    286. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your understanding of the 
appropriate size and makeup of the Reserve components in light of the 
current defense strategy and our constrained defense budget?
    Mr. Hagel. The Services each have different requirements for their 
Reserve Force in their role as force providers. The Service internal 
force management processes will continue to refine the size and 
capabilities of each Reserve component to accommodate changes to the 
defense strategy and reduced budget.

    287. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your assessment of advances 
made in improving Reserve and Guard component mobilization and 
demobilization procedures, and in what areas do problems still exist?
    Mr. Hagel. The Department has made great improvements to the 
mobilization and demobilization procedures over the past decade. Over 
850,000 Reserve and National Guard members have been effectively 
mobilized to support contingency and support operations. If confirmed, 
I would expect the Services to continue to review procedures in order 
to keep faith with our Reserve component members, their families, and 
civilian employers and make necessary adjustments as needs are 
identified.

    288. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what do you consider to be the most 
significant enduring challenges to the enabling of an operational 
reserve aimed at ensuring Reserve component and Guard readiness for 
future mobilization requirements?
    Mr. Hagel. The Reserve components currently serve in an operational 
capacity-available, trained, and equipped for predictable routine 
deployments. With the projected defense budget, the most significant 
enduring challenge will be sufficient funding to sustain the 
operational experience of the Reserve components gained over the past 
decade of utilization.

    289. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, do you see a need to modify current 
statutory authorities for the mobilization of members of the National 
Guard and Reserves or to further enhance their ability to perform 
various national security missions?
    Mr. Hagel. At the present time I believe that appropriate 
authorities are in place to access the National Guard and Reserves 
across their full spectrum of mission assignments.

    290. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, when will dwell time objectives be 
met for the Reserve components?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand the vast majority of dwell time goals for 
the Reserve components are currently being met. As we continue the 
draw-down in Afghanistan these numbers should continue to improve and 
it is expected that dwell time objectives will be fully met during the 
last stages of operations there.

    291. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what effect would an inability to 
meet dwell time objectives have on your decision to implement the 
planned end strength reductions?
    Mr. Hagel. The ability to meet dwell time objectives will be one of 
the many factors taken into account when determining proper end 
strength requirements to meet our emerging strategy. Meeting dwell time 
objectives is an important factor in keeping faith with our All-
Volunteer Force and their families but cannot be the sole factor when 
considering planned end strength requirements.

    292. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what is your understanding and 
assessment of the current size and structure of the Army's Reserve 
component?
    Mr. Hagel. The Army Reserve component is currently organized with 
350,200 soldiers in the Army National Guard and 205,000 soldiers in the 
Army Reserve. Any changes to the size or force structure capabilities 
for the Army Reserve components will be analyzed within the Total Force 
requirements of the Army and will reflect the projected changes in 
budget and defense strategy.

    293. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, what size or force 
structure changes, if any, would you propose for either the Army 
Reserve or the Army National Guard?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #292.

                         involuntary separation
    294. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, are you aware of section 525 in the 
NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 conference report regarding reports on 
involuntary separation of members of the Armed Forces?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes.

    295. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you comply with 
this law?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will make certain the Department 
complies with the provisions of NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013.

                            size of the navy
    296. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, are you aware of section 1015 of 
the NDAA for Fiscal Year 2013 conference report related to the size of 
the Navy?
    Mr. Hagel. Yes, I am aware of the reporting requirement in the NDAA 
for Fiscal Year 2013 related to the size of the Navy. My understanding 
is that the Navy has complied with the law and submitted the report to 
Congress on 1 February 2013. The report was submitted as an 
unclassified document, and additional information about the Force 
Structure Assessment was also submitted in a classified document.

    297. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed, will you comply with 
this law?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #296.

                           global zero report
    298. Senator Ayotte. Mr. Hagel, what specific portions of the May 
2012 Global Zero report that you authored do you believe should not be 
implemented?
    Mr. Hagel. In the Global Zero report we took a longer term view of 
what might be possible under different circumstances, and the report's 
illustrative reductions to nuclear forces were just that--intended to 
provide a stimulus to national debate about how many nuclear weapons 
are enough and to illustrate a possible pathway forward. If confirmed, 
I will focus on implementing the recommendations of the 2010 NPR, while 
also considering what additional steps may be appropriate, and will 
consult with Congress on the way forward.
                                 ______
                                 
             Questions Submitted by Senator Lindsey Graham
                                 israel
    299. Senator Graham. Mr. Hagel, you were one of four Senators not 
to sign a bipartisan letter (dated October 12, 2000, circulated by 
Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott and Senator Tom Daschle) to President 
Clinton expressing the Senate's solidarity with the State of Israel, at 
a time when both Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Chairman 
Arafat and the Palestinian Authority failed to restrain or comment on 
violence by Palestinians in violation of the peace process. If you had 
a chance to reconsider your decision, would you now choose to sign the 
letter?
    Mr. Hagel. With respect to this specific October 2000 letter, I 
wholeheartedly agreed with the objectives at the time--expressing 
solidarity with Israel at a time of crisis--as I do today. Yet, as the 
AIPAC Press release of October 13, 2000 states, I was unable to be 
reached by the deadline in order to sign the letter. The October 13, 
2000 press release explicitly states that while two Senators refused to 
sign the letter (Senators Abraham (MI) and Byrd (WV)), ``Senators Hagel 
and Gregg (NH) could not be reached'' by the deadline.
    Although the circumstances and leaders have changed significantly 
since the letter you referenced was sent in 2000, I continue to support 
the substance of the letter--expressing solidarity with Israel at a 
time of crisis--and I will continue to express this solidarity and 
support as I work with my Israeli counterparts if confirmed as 
Secretary of Defense. The President has said we have Israel's back, and 
I agree.
    As my record in the Senate, my public speeches, and writings in my 
book demonstrate, I have always been a strong supporter of the U.S.-
Israel relationship and of Israel's right to defend itself. 
Additionally, I was a cosponsor of and voted in favor of a number of 
pieces of legislation condemning terrorism against Israel, including 
the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006. The Palestinian Anti-
Terrorism Act of 2006 not only condemned Palestinian terrorism, but 
also placed restrictions on U.S. assistance to the Palestinian 
Authority (PA) unless the PA, and all components within it, accepted 
the quartet principles of renouncing violence, abiding by previous 
agreements, and recognizing Israel's right to exist.

                             national guard
    300. Senator Graham. Mr. Hagel, the Reserve Forces Policy Board 
recently issued a report on the fully burdened and lifecycle cost of 
military personnel and found that a Reserve component member (National 
Guard or Reserve) when not activated is one-third the cost of an Active 
component servicemember. In an era of declining budgets, how do you 
envision leveraging the cost-effectiveness of the National Guard and 
Reserve Forces to meet our Nation's security needs?
    Mr. Hagel. The highly cost effective National Guard and Reserve 
have served the Nation well both in peacetime and war. During the last 
12 years their service has been particularly admirable both overseas 
and in reacting to many emergencies here at home. Although I have not 
analyzed the Reserve Forces Policy Board report you cite, I do believe 
the Guard and Reserve are less costly in a part time status, and 
clearly provide highly trained ready assets with a high degree of long-
term cost efficiency to significantly help sustain the All-Volunteer 
Force. If confirmed, it would be my intention to maintain a strong 
Guard and Reserve, and to take advantage of their skills and 
efficiencies as we structure an affordable military force in an era of 
challenging budgets.
                                 ______
                                 
              Questions Submitted by Senator David Vitter
                            taiwan relations
    301. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act and 
the Six Assurances of 1982 have contributed to the peace and stability 
of the Asia-Pacific region for the past 3 decades. With the military 
balance--including air superiority--gradually shifting in China's 
favor, what are your plans to implement the security commitment the 
United States has for Taiwan under this framework?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree that the Taiwan Relations Act has contributed to 
peace and stability in the region for over 30 years. In my view, the 
increasing complexity and sophistication of the military threat to 
Taiwan from China means that Taiwan must devote greater attention to 
asymmetric concepts and innovative technologies to maximize Taiwan's 
strengths and advantages. If confirmed, I would work closely with 
Congress, throughout DOD, and with our interagency partners to ensure 
the continued effective implementation of all of the relevant 
provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act.

    302. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, as Taiwan is likely to retire some 
of its older fighter aircraft in the next 5 to 10 years, do you believe 
that sales of advanced aircraft are an important next step in this 
commitment?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will look at what specific capabilities 
will help Taiwan meet its self-defense needs in light of the security 
situation in the Taiwan Strait and the evolving military capabilities 
on the mainland.

    303. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, Secretary Leon Panetta previously 
extended an invitation to China to be part of RIMPAC last year. Do you 
believe that as one of the U.S. strategic partners in the region it is 
important to include Taiwan into the RIMPAC exercises? If so, what is 
your plan to implement this?
    Mr. Hagel. The United States is firm in its commitment to Taiwan's 
self-defense needs under the Taiwan Relations Act. That relationship 
includes defense exchanges and other interactions consistent with our 
unofficial relationship and as provided for in the Taiwan Relations 
Act. If confirmed, I will work to identify appropriate exchanges and 
interactions to assist Taiwan's defense capabilities, and contribute to 
peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

                           military strategy
    304. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, our military leaders have stated 
that the United States and its military is at a strategic crossroads 
marked by significant challenges. We have done a remarkable job over 
the last 12 years at catching up to an enemy that we were largely 
unprepared for: political Islam and those radical Islamists who seek to 
impose their ideology in order to rule others--to govern political, 
social, and civic life, as well as religious life. However, we are 
currently facing a damaging sequester, additional proposed Navy, Army, 
and Air Force cuts, while engaging in a shift of U.S. strategy towards 
Asia that seeks to downplay the difficulty associated with the Middle 
East and Africa. The report calls for a scaling back of stability 
operations while suggesting that operations carried out using special 
operations units and drone strikes be increased or sustained. How do 
you see the military maintaining its joint readiness training aspects 
as it draws down from two wars when our strategy appears to be heading 
down a dangerous road?
    Mr. Hagel. Maintaining ready forces is a priority. If confirmed, I 
will work with the Joint Chiefs to better understand the basis of their 
assessment and how we can most effectively address the readiness 
challenges our military faces.
    My sense is that the concerns the Joint Chiefs have expressed about 
readiness come from a variety of factors, including the challenges of 
recovering from 10 years of operational stress, of transitioning to a 
broader range of operations, and of doing all of this in the face of 
fiscal austerity and budget uncertainty. If confirmed, I will carefully 
monitor how all of these factors are posing risks to readiness and will 
work closely with the military and civilian leadership of the 
Department to mitigate those risks to the greatest extent possible.

    305. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, what impact do you think current 
force posturing will have on our ability to deploy to address potential 
threats that are posed by North Korea, Iran, and around the globe?
    Mr. Hagel. As described in the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance, the 
Department is rebalancing toward the Asia-Pacific while maintaining 
focus on the Middle-East. I think that the significant U.S. military 
presence and activities in Asia are a clear demonstration of the 
enduring U.S. commitment to the region and to addressing current and 
emerging challenges in the Asia-Pacific. Moreover, if confirmed as 
Secretary, I would take every step to maintain the ability of America 
to conduct successful combat operations in more than one region at a 
time, ensuring that we have the ability to meet threats around the 
world, as in the Middle East and North Africa, when they arise. Our 
global posture, engagement with allies and partners, and investment in 
flexible defense architectures for high-demand capabilities, such as 
ballistic missile defense, are of great importance.
    North Korea's December Taepo Dong II missile launch and recent 
threats to conduct a third nuclear test underscore the growing North 
Korean threat to international peace and security. U.S. diplomatic 
efforts following the December missile launch, particularly with China, 
resulted in U.N. Security Council Resolution 2087, which affirms the 
international community's opposition to North Korea's provocations. The 
tightened sanctions in the resolution will help impede the growth of 
North Korea's weapons of mass destruction program. If confirmed, I will 
continue to ensure our military provides the deterrence and defense 
necessary to protect our allies and our interests. This posture is also 
the best way to create conditions where diplomacy has the best possible 
prospects to succeed.
    With respect to Iran, I believe that it is critical that the U.S. 
military maintain a robust presence in the region to counter Iran, 
reassure our partners, and build partner capacity. Our carrier presence 
is a key element of this presence. If confirmed, I will work with the 
combatant commanders to revalidate our posture and ensure it best 
addresses the threats, challenges, and opportunities in the region to 
preserve all options for the President while balancing other national 
security needs.

    306. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, you stated in responses to advance 
policy questions in regard to the Joint Chief's concerns about a hollow 
force that: ``the concerns the Joint Chiefs have expressed about 
readiness come from a variety of factors, including the challenges of 
recovering from 10 years of operational stress of transitioning to a 
broader range of operations, and of doing all of this in the face of 
fiscal austerity and budget uncertainty.''
    Successfully meeting our national security strategic objectives 
with a smaller, overall force will require us to improve our focus on 
training our servicemembers from the separate branches effectively. 
Last year General Ray Odierno, USA, Chief of Staff of the Army spoke to 
this committee about the importance of a joint force that is flexible 
and adaptive to the challenges of the new environment. Could you please 
provide assurances that vital training will not be walked away from, 
training such as Joint Readiness Training Centers where the Air Force 
and Army conduct training operations that hugely effect fundamental 
joint operations?
    Mr. Hagel. Maintaining ready forces is of highest priority, 
especially in a world of ever changing challenges and threats. If 
confirmed, I will work with the Joint Chiefs to better understand the 
basis of their assessment and how we can most effectively address the 
readiness challenges our military faces. The highest yield training 
exercises will be revisited frequently to ensure that our forces remain 
flexible and adaptive to meet our new challenges.

    307. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, how do you plan to monitor risk and 
the potential mismatch between constrained resources and demands of 
operational plans?
    Mr. Hagel. I am deeply impressed by the caliber and capabilities of 
our military forces. It is vitally important that they be ready to 
respond to the Nation's needs, and I am concerned that further budget 
cuts will negatively affect readiness. If confirmed, I will get regular 
updates by the Joint Chiefs on where we must devote the Department's 
attention and resources to ensure the readiness of the force.

                           nuclear deterrent
    308. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, in the Global Zero report, within 
the context of rebalancing nuclear deterrence you state, ``new 
opportunities will emerge for cooperation with allies and other 
countries with common security interests.'' In your 2008 book you 
stated that, ``the world needs to establish a new global consensus on 
nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation . . . as the world's largest 
nuclear power the United States has a responsibility to lead in that 
effort . . . '' and that ``we must once again convince the world that 
America has the clear intention of fulfilling the nuclear disarmament 
commitments that we have made.''
    There are nine nuclear powers who are out there and a number of 
others who are pursuing nuclear capabilities. Do you believe the 
elimination of the U.S. nuclear triad or Global Strike Command as an 
independent command will increase the security of the United States and 
lead to a more peaceful world?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe in the President's long-term vision of a world 
without nuclear weapons. It is a vision shared by nearly every 
President since Eisenhower, including Ronald Reagan. I also support the 
President's commitment that the United States will not disarm 
unilaterally. If confirmed, I look forward to leading DOD in supporting 
the President's objectives to reduce the number of nuclear weapons and 
their roles in national security policy and to create the conditions 
that will allow others to join with us in this process. Our efforts to 
modernize the nuclear deterrent and build a responsive infrastructure 
go hand-in-hand with efforts to reduce the world's nuclear dangers. The 
United States must have a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent 
so long as nuclear weapons remain. If confirmed, I will work to ensure 
the needed leadership focus on this issue and that institutional 
excellence for nuclear deterrence remains a part of the President's 
comprehensive approach to nuclear security.

    309. Senator Vitter. Mr. Hagel, the Global Zero report would 
seriously limit B-52s and U.S. nuclear deterrent. Please share your 
thoughts on how you balance your previous position with your statements 
that you support our nuclear deterrents.
    Mr. Hagel. In the Global Zero report we took a longer term view of 
what might be possible under different circumstances. The report's 
illustrative reductions to nuclear forces were just that--intended to 
provide a stimulus to national debate about how many nuclear weapons 
are enough and to illustrate a possible pathway forward. If confirmed, 
I will focus on implementing the recommendations of the 2010 NPR, while 
also considering what additional steps may be appropriate, and will 
consult with Congress on the way forward.
                                 ______
                                 
                Questions Submitted by Senator Roy Blunt
                 joint professional military education
    310. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, do you believe Joint Professional 
Military Education (JPME) helps ensure that the individual Services and 
other agencies that play a role in national security cooperate 
effectively?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe JPME, as established under the Goldwater-
Nichols Act, has been central to strengthening and integrating the 
Joint Force. It is my understanding that the JPME system is 
fundamentally designed to foster cooperation and jointness among the 
members of the different Services. I also understand that members of 
the interagency, as well as international partners, attend JPME. As the 
last decade of war has shown, jointness among our servicemembers and 
their civilian partners is critical to success.
    311. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, if so, what would you do as 
Secretary of Defense to continue to expand and improve our JPME culture 
and programs?
    Mr. Hagel. I am not yet familiar with the scope of current JPME 
programs. If confirmed, I will work with civilian and military 
leadership to assess the effectiveness of these programs and propose 
any changes that are deemed necessary.

             defense budget and national military strategy
    312. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, given the potential severe cuts that 
could be imposed upon the defense budget due to sequestration, how will 
you put a process in place to ensure a strategy-driven QDR process that 
produces recommendations ``fully independent of the budget''?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will work with the Department's 
leadership team to ensure that the QDR starts with an assessment of the 
opportunities and challenges that the Nation faces in the emerging 
global security environment, and then identifies priorities based on 
our national security interests for defense policy and force planning. 
The assessment of threats, risks, and opportunities, along with the 
identification of national security interests, would be undertaken 
fully independent of the budget. Prioritization of objectives and 
identification of approaches would follow and be resources informed in 
order to ensure they are realistic and appropriate.

                             cyber security
    313. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, what should be the DOD's role in 
protecting the United States against foreign cyber-attacks to the 
Homeland?
    Mr. Hagel. DOD has the mission to defend the Nation in cyberspace 
and to support a whole-of-government effort to address cyber threats. I 
support this approach. This mission includes a close partnership with 
DHS in its role of leading efforts for the cybersecurity of U.S. 
critical infrastructure, and non-DOD unclassified government networks.

    314. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, what should be the DOD's role in 
protecting the United States against Iranian attacks on the financial 
sector?
    Mr. Hagel. While I cannot speak to the details of any specific 
attacks, I believe that DOD should contribute its capabilities to 
support a whole-of-government effort to address cyber (and other) 
threats to U.S. national and economic security. The President has made 
clear that the United States will respond to hostile acts in cyberspace 
as we would any other threat to our country, and that the United States 
reserves the right to use all necessary means, including military means 
as a last resort, to defend our Nation and our interests. I support 
this approach.

    315. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, are we adequately deterring our 
adversaries in cyberspace?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that a number of important steps have been 
taken to deter malicious activity in cyberspace, but that the United 
States must do more to protect public and private networks from cyber 
threats. DOD should continue to develop its cyber capabilities and 
expertise, and it should work closely with its public, private, and 
international partners to deter and discourage malicious behavior. I 
also believe that legislation providing for increased information 
sharing on cyber threats and the development of critical infrastructure 
cybersecurity standards, in partnership with the private sector, would 
help reduce vulnerabilities and protect our national and economic 
security.

    316. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, are you worried that America's use 
of cyberwarfare capabilities--such as the famous STUXNET attack on 
Iran--is setting a dangerous precedent for others?
    Mr. Hagel. I am not able to comment on STUXNET or who was 
responsible for it, but I do think that the increased frequency of 
disruptive cyber activities is a clear national security concern. 
Recent such examples of destructive attacks, such as the Shamoon virus 
that virtually destroyed 30,000 computers at Saudi Arabian State Oil 
Company Aramco, are a significant escalation in the cyber threat.

    317. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, given our growing dependence on 
computer networks, should we pursue some sort of a global regime to 
limit this danger?
    Mr. Hagel. I agree with the President that longstanding norms 
guiding state behavior, including the law of armed conflict, also apply 
in cyberspace. I also believe we should continue to press for the 
development of international cyberspace norms that build upon common 
principles for responsible state behavior.

                                 taiwan
    318. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, in accordance with the Taiwan 
Relations Act, the 113th Congress will likely advance commercial 
relations with and foster future defense sales to Taiwan. However, as 
China's naval, air, and missile capabilities increase, defending Taiwan 
will become increasingly difficult. Please describe your security 
commitments to Taiwan as they relate to the sale of advanced aircraft 
to the Taiwan Government.
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that the Taiwan Relations Act has contributed 
to peace and stability in the region for over 30 years. In my view, the 
increasing complexity and sophistication of the military threat to 
Taiwan from China means that Taiwan must devote greater attention to 
asymmetric concepts and innovative technologies to maximize Taiwan's 
strengths and advantages. If confirmed, I would work closely with 
Congress, throughout DOD, and with our interagency partners to ensure 
the continued effective implementation of all of the relevant 
provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act. If confirmed, I will look at 
what specific capabilities self-defense capabilities Taiwan needs in 
light of the security situation in the Taiwan Strait and the evolving 
military capabilities on the mainland.

                      u.s. policy in the caucasus
    319. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, how do you assess U.S.-Azerbaijan 
relations and what will be your policy to expand this strategic 
partnership?
    Mr. Hagel. I recognize the many shared interests and current 
cooperation between the United States and Azerbaijan across the foreign 
policy, economics, energy, and cultural spheres. In particular, the 
U.S.-Azerbaijan defense relationship is strong, with room to grow. I 
understand that DOD engages in regular consultations at high levels 
with Azerbaijani counterparts to identify areas where we can strengthen 
our cooperation and partnership.
    If confirmed, I would continue this senior level engagement with 
Azerbaijan and continue the Department's commitment to supporting 
Azerbaijan's defense reforms, ability to interoperate with NATO and 
deploy to coalition operations, and capacity to address terrorism and 
other transnational threats and secure its maritime borders and energy 
infrastructure. I would look for the United States to be Azerbaijan's 
partner of choice and help Azerbaijan's defense establishment 
contribute to regional security and stability, such as with 
Azerbaijan's significant support to international efforts in 
Afghanistan.

    320. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, how should the United States respond 
to the continued presence of Russian military forces inside 
internationally-recognized Georgian territory?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that the United States should continue to 
support Georgia's territorial integrity within its internationally 
recognized borders, and remain steadfast in non-recognition of the 
occupied territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. We should continue 
to object to Russia's occupation and militarization of Georgian 
territory. If confirmed, I would speak out in support of Georgia's 
territorial integrity and to call on Russia to fulfill its obligations 
under the 2008 ceasefire agreement, including withdrawal of its forces 
to pre-conflict positions and free access for humanitarian assistance. 
I would continue to support the U.S. role as an active participant in 
the Geneva discussions, working with the co-chairs and others in 
pursuit of a resolution to the conflict.
    We should continue to fully support Georgia's sovereignty and 
territorial integrity as we seek to work on practical steps with Russia 
to promote stability and security on the ground and ultimately, a 
peaceful resolution of the conflict.

    321. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, how do you assess the current U.S. 
military relationship with countries in the Caucasus region, 
specifically Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan?
    Mr. Hagel. I believe DOD has fostered strong relations with 
Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan to strengthen each nation's political 
independence and contributions to broader regional security and 
stability. I understand that there are regular senior level 
consultations with each of these partners, in support of defense 
reforms, interoperability with NATO and support to coalition 
operations, and building capacity to address the range of transnational 
threats in the region. I believe that these defense partnerships have 
produced notable successes, including the significant contributions 
made by each country to NATO operations. In Afghanistan, Georgia has 
deployed two battalions of soldiers. Armenia and Azerbaijan have each 
supplied a company to the NATO International Security Assistance Force 
(ISAF). Georgia and Azerbaijan provide key transit access into the 
Afghanistan theater. In Kosovo, Armenia has deployed a platoon of 
soldiers under U.S. command to the NATO Kosovo Force (KFOR).
    Our defense partnerships should take into account the many 
political and security challenges the region faces, among them the 
Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the occupied territories in Georgia. We 
should design our engagement deliberately so that it carefully 
contributes to regional stability rather than enflaming existing 
tensions.

    322. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, should the United States deepen its 
military ties with these nations?
    Mr. Hagel. The United States has a shared interest with Georgia, 
Armenia, and Azerbaijan to partner on the development of each nation as 
a contributor of security and stability to the broader region. If 
confirmed, I would continue to engage these nations and seek areas to 
deepen these partnerships in ways appropriate to our shared interests, 
political will, available resources, and capacity to absorb new 
capabilities and missions.

    323. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, how will these ties impact U.S. 
relations with Russia?
    Mr. Hagel. It is prudent to give consideration to how improved ties 
with one country might affect the broader region. If confirmed, I would 
support DOD efforts to seek and provide transparency in our defense 
cooperative relations in the region. I would look for Department 
engagement to be guided by principles that strive to enhance regional 
security, the strengthening of responsible defense reforms, and 
adherence to the rule of law. These principles must also strengthen 
sovereignty and independence-the United States should continue to 
emphasize its desire to cooperate and assist, not to dominate or 
impose. If confirmed, I would support engagement with key states 
throughout the region, including Russia, and strive to ensure all 
recognize that U.S. cooperation with one is not at the expense of the 
cooperation with or security of another.

    324. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, do you believe that NATO should 
expand?
    Mr. Hagel. I support the administration position that NATO's door 
remains open.

    325. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, please describe how U.S. defense 
policies can ensure the sovereignty and political independence of our 
regional partners such as Azerbaijan and Armenia.
    Mr. Hagel. The objective of our relations with Azerbaijan and 
Armenia should be to strengthen each nation's political independence 
and contributions to broader regional security and stability. We should 
continue to seek regional stability through our bilateral and 
multilateral engagement. DOD has an important role to play in those 
regards, supporting overall U.S. engagement objectives.

                          u.s. africa command
    326. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, undoubtedly, radical fundamentalism 
and terrorism continues to spread in Northern Africa. What is U.S. 
Africa Command's (AFRICOM) role in responding to and preventing the 
spread of terrorism in Mali, Nigeria, Somalia, Libya, and now Egypt?
    Mr. Hagel. Countering terrorism in Africa, just as elsewhere in the 
world, is a multi-faceted problem requiring a whole-of-government 
solution. DOD contributes to the counterterrorism mission in Africa 
primarily by strengthening the defense capabilities of African states 
and regional organizations, and by working to support African-led 
operations, such as the African Union Mission in Somalia. AFRICOM is 
responsible for implementing DOD's counterterrorism and partner 
capacity-building missions throughout the African continent through 
military-military exchanges, exercises, and security cooperation on the 
African continent. When directed, AFRICOM is also prepared to conduct 
military operations in order to deter and defeat terrorism and other 
transnational threats, and to provide a security environment conducive 
to good governance and development.

                    movement of troops to australia
    327. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, please describe the nature, purpose, 
and strategic importance of our ``permanent and constant'' commitment 
to a U.S. military presence in Australia as it relates to countering 
China's influence and reasserting U.S. interests in the region.
    Mr. Hagel. In 2010, the Prime Minister of Australia and President 
Obama agreed to establish a rotational U.S. Marine Corps presence in 
northern Australia. The first rotation of approximately 200 U.S. 
marines took place from April through September 2012. In addition, 
closer cooperation between the Royal Australian Air Force and the U.S. 
Air Force has resulted in increased rotations of U.S. aircraft through 
northern Australia. These two initiatives further enhance the 
capabilities of both countries by increasing opportunities for combined 
training and enabling more effective pursuit of common interests in the 
Asia-Pacific region. Building on the interoperability developed through 
joint operations over the past decade in Iraq and Afghanistan, these 
initiatives will help us deepen that interoperability long after the 
wars are over. The United States will not build any U.S. bases in 
Australia. U.S. forces will rotate in and out of Darwin and will be co-
located with Australian forces on existing Australian military bases.
    Our military cooperation with Australia helps the United States 
rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region and specifically supports 
efforts to become more geographically distributed and operationally 
resilient in the Pacific. U.S.-Australian force posture initiatives are 
not aimed at any one country. I believe that the U.S. rotational 
presence in northern Australia and our strong alliance with Australia 
will lead to further cooperation with a variety of nations. The United 
States sees many shared regional challenges in the Asia-Pacific, 
including responding to natural disasters, countering extremism, 
ensuring freedom of navigation, and enhancing regional stability.

                      satellite and radio systems
    328. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, DOD's satellite and radio systems 
are essential to our national security. However, some of the spectrum 
that DOD currently controls is well-suited for use for commercial 
mobile broadband services. In fact, the 1755-1780 MHz band, which DOD 
holds the license for, is particularly well suited for mobile broadband 
because it is already being used for this purpose internationally. 
Additionally, the administration has a stated priority, as part of the 
National Broadband Plan, of making more spectrum available for auction 
to commercial providers for consumer use. Ostensibly, this plan would 
include both the reallocation of some broadcast spectrum and of some 
spectrum licenses held by government users. Can you provide the cost 
estimate for relocating DOD operations off of the 1755-1780 MHz band?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand that DOD and the other Federal agencies are 
working through National Telecommunication and Information Agency's 
(NTIA) established processes to support the President's goal to make 
500 MHz available for commercial mobile broadband use. As part of that 
process, the Department has conducted a detailed study of the cost and 
operational feasibility of reallocation of the entire 1,755-1,850 MHz 
band, which is used by the Department to meet mission requirements. The 
NTIA has reported that it would cost nearly $13 billion for DOD to 
vacate the entire 95 MHz, and $18 billion to cover non-Department 
systems as well, and that alternate spectrum and adequate time to 
transition to that alternate spectrum would need to be provided. If I 
am confirmed, I will direct the Department to consult with NTIA about 
whether it would be useful for the NTIA to initiate a detailed study of 
vacating just the lower 25 MHz.

                base realignment and closure commission
    329. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, what is your position on the 
establishment of a new BRAC Commission to oversee additional domestic 
base closures?
    Mr. Hagel. I understand Congress did not accept that the 
administration's proposal for two rounds of BRAC. However, I think it 
is necessary for the Department to examine its infrastructure and 
eliminate excess. While the BRAC process is not perfect, it is the best 
process identified to date, and I believe a fair and comprehensive way 
to right-size the Department's domestic footprint. If confirmed, I 
would have to look at the need for BRAC in the future and would work 
with Congress on any such proposal.

                     tactical aviation competition
    330. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, DOD faces an upcoming challenge to 
maintain a competitive and innovative defense industrial base to meet 
the Nation's tactical aviation needs. The fiscal year 2013 President's 
budget demonstrates a near-term shift to a single manufacturer for 
tactical aircraft. This outcome will have significant consequences: 
with a single-source option for tactical aircraft programs, DOD will 
lose vital competition that can help drive down costs, leading to 
potentially more expensive, less capable systems; investment in 
innovative technology and engineering for tomorrow's capabilities will 
suffer without a balanced, diverse tactical aviation base; and a 
limited manufacturing capability will struggle to be flexible to cope 
with changing demand and there will be no way to manage risk for future 
developing programs. Today, the F/A-18 program provides DOD with a 
highly capable, affordable, and available manufacturing line that 
promotes competition and drives innovation into tactical aviation. It 
is the only current American tactical aircraft that can fill 
operational gaps or address the Navy's tactical aviation shortfall. All 
F/A-18 aircraft--the F/A-18E/F Block II Super Hornet and EA-18G 
Growler--continue to be delivered on-cost and ahead of schedule. Can 
you please discuss the importance of maintaining competition in 
tactical aviation production?
    Mr. Hagel. I recognize that competition in all acquisition 
programs, including tactical aviation production, is key to 
affordability, to innovation, and to a strong industrial base. I intend 
to fully support the continuation of appropriate competition.

    331. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, if confirmed as Secretary of 
Defense, what can DOD do to ensure that the F/A-18 line isn't ended in 
the near-term, both for the purposes of filling potential operational 
gaps and managing risk of future tactical aviation programs?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will assess the balance of strike 
fighter capability, and the state of the F/A-18 production line. I will 
also ensure the Department supports international sales of the F/A-18.

                          international sales
    332. Senator Blunt. Mr. Hagel, in your testimony before the Senate 
Armed Services Committee, you discussed the need to protect the core 
defense industrial base, even during a time that budget challenges will 
lead to some necessary cuts in spending. One particular way to support 
the Nation's defense infrastructure is to support international sales 
of American defense manufacturing. International sales help keep 
manufacturing facilities alive while ensuring that the engineering 
expertise and workforce are retained for additional domestic 
production. Your predecessor, Secretary Panetta, took this 
responsibility very seriously, advocating for American defense 
platforms vigorously as they competed against other international 
options in campaigns abroad. The Military Services can also be strong 
advocates, although not all demonstrate the same level of commitment to 
international campaigns. If you are confirmed as Secretary of Defense, 
can you describe your role--both personally and as a broader policy 
within DOD--to support international sales of eligible American defense 
programs? Please discuss on how DOD and the individual Services might 
better promote American products abroad.
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that international sales help to sustain the 
defense industrial base, and strengthen our relationship with allies 
and partners.
    If confirmed, I would work closely with the Secretary of State and 
Congress to shape international sales planning and to support the 
timely transfer of capability. I would also meet with defense industry 
leaders to identify areas where foreign sales opportunities exist that 
would help sustain needed industrial capabilities.
    Furthermore, if confirmed, I would continue to build on the 
foundation established by both Secretaries Gates and Panetta to 
streamline the Department's foreign military sales process.
                                 ______
                                 
                Questions Submitted by Senator Mike Lee
                            nuclear weapons
    333. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, nuclear deterrence has been a 
successful element of our national defense posture for decades. What is 
your position on and rationale for the number of nuclear warheads and 
their disposition among the three forms of delivery in order to 
maintain a credible and successful nuclear deterrent posture for our 
Nation?
    Mr. Hagel. America's nuclear deterrent for more than 60 years has 
played a central role in ensuring global security. If confirmed, I will 
be committed to maintaining a safe, secure, and effective nuclear 
arsenal. I believe that a triad of ICBMs, SLBMs, and nuclear-capable 
heavy bombers continues to support U.S. national security interests 
under New START limits.

    334. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, what do you see as the future of 
Minuteman III?
    Mr. Hagel. With regard to Minuteman III, I am aware that the NDAA 
for 2007 requires sustaining the Minuteman III weapon system through 
2030. If confirmed, I will ensure that the Department continues to 
assess the whole Minuteman system and its components to be sure that 
this system is sustained through at least 2030.

                                  f-35
    335. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, the Air Force has retired nearly 1,900 
aircraft over the past decade, the majority of which have not been 
replaced. Fighter inventories have been reduced by almost 25 percent 
and F-22 production was truncated to well below original Air Force 
requirements. While newer aircraft tend to be more capable than those 
they replace, even a more capable aircraft can only be in one place at 
one time. The F-35 is now the sole remaining fighter modernization 
program in DOD. What is your position on the need for this aircraft and 
how will you ensure we continue to modernize an aging fighter force?
    Mr. Hagel. My view is we cannot let any other nation achieve parity 
with the United States in the ability to control the air. My 
understanding is that other nations are developing modern fighters that 
will challenge our existing fighters and that the F-35 is needed to 
maintain our advantage. If confirmed I will review the health of the F-
35 program to ensure the aircraft are delivered with the capability we 
need and at a cost we can afford. I will also examine our options for 
continued modernization in this critical area.

                        defense industrial base
    336. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, DOD relies on our Nation's defense 
industrial base to provide and support the equipment needed by our 
military to fulfill its role in our national defense. What steps would 
you take to ensure that we have a robust defense industrial base, both 
public and private, that can reliably and affordably provide and 
support our military equipment in a timely manner in the future?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will place a high priority on ensuring 
the continued viability of the industrial base. I will assess the 
programs the Department has already authorized and that are underway to 
ensure they meet that goal.
    Working closely with the Military Services and industry, I will 
ensure early identification of those skills and manufacturing 
capabilities that are both critical and increasingly fragile, and take 
appropriate actions necessary to preserve those few capabilities.

                    u.s. role in the united nations
    337. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, what role should the United States 
play within the U.N. peacekeeping missions?
    Mr. Hagel. The United States has historically played an important 
role in guiding and supporting U.N. peacekeeping missions, and I 
believe that this approach continues to make good sense. As a permanent 
member of the U.N. Security Council, we should continue to exert 
leadership across the full spectrum of peacekeeping activities--from 
mission inception and establishment, through various phases of 
operations until mission closure. In such diverse venues as Haiti, 
Liberia, Sudan and South Sudan, U.N. peacekeeping is making vital 
contributions to peace and stability in the face of enormous 
challenges. It will not always make sense for the United States to 
provide ``boots on the ground'' to U.N. peacekeeping missions, but I do 
believe there are likely to be cases where U.S. direct involvement will 
be in U.S. national interests.

    338. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, do you still feel that the United 
States should deploy ground troops as U.N. peacekeepers in a non-
militarized Palestinian state? If not, what has changed?
    Mr. Hagel. I support a two-state solution, with two states living 
side-by-side in peace and security: the Jewish State of Israel and an 
independent Palestinian State; each state enjoying self-determination, 
mutual recognition, and peace. The arrangements necessary to achieve a 
lasting and effective peace can only by determined by the parties 
through negotiations. In addressing the specific security arrangements, 
these details will also need to be determined by the parties, along 
with the other final status issues. Israel must be able to defend 
itself--by itself--against any threat. The security provisions in a 
final peace deal must be robust enough to prevent a resurgence of 
terrorism; to stop the infiltration of weapons; and to provide 
effective border security. The United States, and the international 
community, should be prepared to support these security requirements as 
requested by the parties.

                      military involvement in asia
    339. Senator Lee. Mr. Hagel, in your opinion what effect will the 
recent shift to the Pacific bring to Asian countries? What will the 
shift mean for: Russia, China, North Korea, Japan, and the Republic of 
China?
    Mr. Hagel. The President has said that the rebalance to the Asia-
Pacific is a whole-of-government effort to renew and deepen U.S. 
engagement throughout the Asia-Pacific. This policy is not a new shift, 
but an increased assertion of this region's relative economic, 
political, and security importance--one with which I agree. A key tenet 
of the rebalance should continue to be modernizing our alliances and 
deepening partnerships, especially through increased regional 
engagement and capacity building, bilaterally and multilaterally.
    Japan is the linchpin of our presence in Asia. Japan is an 
increasingly critical partner in missile defense, humanitarian 
assistance and disaster relief, maritime security, and other important 
areas. I would continue the work of my predecessors to broaden and 
deepen this critical alliance to ensure that it is capable of 
responding to the security challenges of the 21st century.
    The United States has a similarly robust relationship with the 
Republic of Korea (ROK). My understanding is that we have a 
comprehensive agenda aimed at facilitating the smooth transfer of 
wartime operational control in 2015, and ensuring the ROK Government 
has the capabilities necessary to defend the peninsula. I would 
continue these important efforts, and would also continue to stress the 
importance of trilateral ties between Japan, the ROK, and the United 
States.
    The Taiwan Relations Act provides that the United States ``will 
make available to Taiwan such defense articles and defense services in 
such quantity as may be necessary to enable Taiwan to maintain a 
sufficient self-defense capability.'' That policy has contributed to 
peace and stability in the region for over 30 years and is consistent 
with longstanding U.S. policy, which calls for a peaceful resolution of 
the Taiwan issue in a manner acceptable to the people on both sides of 
the Taiwan Strait. If confirmed, I would work closely with Congress, 
the Commander of U.S. Pacific Command, and the Department's interagency 
partners to ensure the continued effective implementation of all of the 
relevant provisions of the Taiwan Relations Act.
    Our relationship with China will be critical in the rebalance. We 
will continue to build our partnership with China based on practical 
steps to address shared challenges and interests in the region while 
also monitoring the rapid modernization of China's military and 
assertion of territorial claims in the region.
    Through the rebalance we will work with our partners to deter 
destabilizing and provocative behavior by North Korea, including its 
proliferation activities, ballistic missile program, and nuclear 
program which continue to present a serious threat to the United 
States, our regional allies, and the international community. We will 
also ensure that we can deter and, if necessary, defeat North Korean 
aggression.
    The United States will work to build trust and understanding with 
Russia in areas of mutual interest in Asia and encourage it to be a 
contributor across a broad range of issues in the region.
                                 ______
                                 
                Questions Submitted by Senator Ted Cruz
                             iran sanctions
    340. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, you claim to have voted against the 
renewal of the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA) in 2001 because ``I 
thought there might be other ways to harness our vast power and that of 
our allies.'' Please specify what other ways would have been more 
effective than the sanctions imposed by ILSA.
    Mr. Hagel. I believe that multilateral sanctions against Iran, 
backed by a unified world community, are the most effective sanctions. 
For example, the multilateral sanctions implemented in U.N. Security 
Council (UNSC) Resolution 1929--which resulted from President Obama's 
work in 2010 to cement the Permanent 5 UNSC members in unanimously 
supporting multilateral efforts--are the most crippling sanctions 
against Iran in history. Continuing to maintain the international 
community's unified stance to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear 
weapon--to include further sanctions if necessary--is more effective 
than implementing unilateral sanctions. However, times and 
circumstances have changed significantly since 2001 and I agree that 
Iran's continued pursuit of a nuclear weapon means that further 
sanctions, both multilateral and unilateral, may be necessary.

    341. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, after receiving criticism for your 
record on sanctions, you wrote in a letter to Senator Barbara Boxer 
that you now ``agree that with Iran's continued rejection of diplomatic 
overtures, further effective sanctions, both multilateral and 
unilateral--may be necessary . . . '' In your advance policy questions, 
you also compliment the President's strategy on Iran, and acknowledge 
that it has ``included the application of smart, unprecedented, and 
effective sanctions against the Iranian regime . . . '' The sanctions 
the President has utilized include unilateral sanctions. Why do you now 
feel you can support unilateral sanctions, when for years in the Senate 
you opposed their use?
    Mr. Hagel. I continue to fully support President Obama's policy 
with respect to sanctions on Iran. While there are some circumstances 
in which unilateral sanctions are effective, I believe that 
multilateral sanctions against Iran are the most effective approach. 
For example, the multilateral sanctions implemented in UNSC Resolution 
1929--which resulted from President Obama's work in 2010 to cement the 
Permanent 5 UNSC members in unanimously supporting multilateral 
efforts--are the most crippling sanctions against Iran in history. 
Continuing to maintain the international community's unified stance to 
prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon--to include further 
sanctions if necessary--is more effective than implementing unilateral 
sanctions.
    That said, now that we have built international support for 
sanctions against Iran, unilateral sanctions are more likely to have a 
crippling effect. As I wrote to Senator Boxer, I agree that with Iran's 
continued pursuit of a nuclear weapon may make further effective 
sanctions, both multilateral and unilateral, necessary.

    342. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, in your advance policy questions, you 
also state that the President's strategy on Iran ``smartly . . . made 
clear that all options are on the table'' and that you ``agree with the 
President that the United States should take no options off the table 
in our efforts to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.'' You 
then promise that, if confirmed, you ``will focus intently on ensuring 
that the U.S. military is, in fact, prepared for any contingency.'' Yet 
in 2010 you told a forum at the Atlantic Council that you were ``not so 
sure it is necessary to continue to say all options are on the table'' 
with respect to Iran. You wrote in your 2008 book America: Our Next 
Chapter that, ``the genie of nuclear armaments is already out of the 
bottle, no matter what Iran does,'' and went on to imply that sovereign 
nation states possessing nuclear weapons could be excepted to respond 
with ``some degree of responsible, or at least sane, behavior.'' Please 
clarify your view on whether or not the military option should remain 
on the table with Iran.
    Mr. Hagel. Let me be clear: I support the President's policy on 
Iran of prevention, not containment. We must prevent Iran from 
acquiring a nuclear weapon. I have never advocated for a policy of 
containment nor have I ever stated the United States could live with a 
nuclear Iran. In order to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, 
we must keep all options on the table, including the military option. 
If confirmed as the Secretary of Defense, I will--as stated 
previously--ensure that the U.S. military is planning and prepared for 
all contingencies. I have consistently argued in favor of keeping all 
options on the table, including in my September 28, 2012 Washington 
Post op-ed co-authored with two former CENTCOM commanders, where we 
said, ``Our position is fully consistent with the policy of presidents 
for more than a decade of keeping all options on the table, including 
the use of military force, thereby increasing pressure on Iran while 
working toward a political solution.''

    343. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, in regards to the quote in your book, 
why would you feel that a military option would be necessary, when you 
seem to believe that the United States and our allies could live with a 
nuclear Iran?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #342.

                            nuclear weapons
    344. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, you are a signatory of Global Zero, 
an initiative dedicated to the elimination of all nuclear weapons. You 
were also a member of the six-person Global Zero U.S. Nuclear Policy 
Commission, headed by retired U.S. Marine Corps General James 
Cartwright. As a result, your name appears on the Commission's May 2012 
report, which calls for cutting deployed U.S. nuclear warheads from 
1,550 to 450 strategic weapons by 2022. In your testimony, you insisted 
this report was merely illustrative and had no relevance to your actual 
policy on our nuclear arsenal. Yet in your 2008 book America: Our Next 
Chapter, you wrote with respect to nuclear disarmament: ``As the 
world's largest nuclear power, the United States has a responsibility 
to lead in this effort. There is no other way. In particular, we must 
once again convince the world that America has the clear intention of 
fulfilling the nuclear disarmament commitments that we have made.'' 
Please explain specifically how you will fulfill the responsibility you 
believe we have to lead the effort on nuclear disarmament.
    Mr. Hagel. I believe in the President's long-term vision of a world 
without nuclear weapons. It is a vision shared by nearly every 
President since Eisenhower, including Ronald Reagan. I also support the 
President's commitment that the United States will not disarm 
unilaterally. If confirmed, I look forward to leading DOD in supporting 
the President's objectives to reduce the number of nuclear weapons and 
their roles in national security policy and to create the conditions 
that will allow others to join with us in this process. Our efforts to 
modernize the nuclear deterrent and build a responsive infrastructure 
go hand-in-hand with efforts to reduce the world's nuclear dangers. The 
United States must have a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent 
so long as nuclear weapons remain. If confirmed, I will work to ensure 
the needed leadership focus on this issue and that institutional 
excellence for nuclear deterrence remains a part of the President's 
comprehensive approach to nuclear security.

                        negotiating with russia
    345. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, you have insisted that you have 
always been a strong proponent of bilateral arms control agreements, 
and you have spoken warmly in the press (Interview on the Riz Kahn 
Show, Al Jazeera, 3/21/09) of former President Dimitri Medvedev as a 
youthful leader with a strong commitment to nuclear arms reduction. 
Going into the new round of arms talks with Russia that was announced 
this week, do you consider President Vladimir Putin a similarly 
reliable negotiating partner?
    Mr. Hagel. While there has been no announcement of new arms control 
talks, if there are such talks in the future, I would expect President 
Putin to come to the table as a reliable negotiating partner. Of 
course, being a ``reliable'' partner does not mean that President 
Putin, or any negotiator, will agree with U.S. positions or 
perspectives. But I expect that he would enter into negotiations as a 
reliable negotiating partner.

    346. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, Senator Kerry was asked during his 
confirmation hearing about our relationship with Russia and if he would 
recommend entering into any new arms control measures until all 
compliance and verification issues regarding existing agreements were 
fully settled. Would you recommend any new arms control agreements if 
there are existing verification and compliance issues with current 
agreements?
    Mr. Hagel. Compliance with legal obligations is central to the 
effectiveness of arms control treaties, and concerns about 
noncompliance must be addressed. If confirmed, I will ensure that DOD 
works with the Department of State and other interagency partners in 
assessing and responding to compliance concerns. While resolution of 
such issues with Russia is clearly important, I do not believe that 
discussions of possible further nuclear arms reductions need await 
resolution of all compliance issues. If confirmed, I would have the 
Department work with the interagency to address any compliance concerns 
through the existing arrangements established by the respective 
treaties for that purpose. If resolution in that manner is not 
possible, the administration should raise the issues with the Russian 
Federation government at higher levels, including up to the ministerial 
or presidential level if necessary.

    347. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, how specifically would you address 
these issues?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #346.

    348. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, should any new arms control 
agreements be negotiated, would it be your policy that they will occur 
through the treaty power and come to the Senate for ratification?
    Mr. Hagel. If confirmed, I will consult closely with Congress 
regarding any additional arms control agreements--and whether they 
should occur through the treaty power and come to the Senate for advice 
and consent to ratification.

                                 israel
    349. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, in a number of statements (for 
example your July 28, 2006, speech to the Brookings Institution), you 
have spoken highly of the 2002 Beirut Declaration by the Arab League as 
a ``squandered'' diplomatic opportunity for both the United States and 
Israel. Do you believe Israel should be prepared to accept the 
``achievement of a just solution to the Palestinian refugee problem to 
be agreed upon in accordance with U.N. General Assembly Resolution 
194'' as per the Declaration?
    Mr. Hagel. I continue to believe, as I did when I cosponsored and 
voted for the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006, that any partner 
for peace must renounce violence, abide by previous agreements, and 
recognize Israel's right to exist. Negotiations between the parties are 
the only viable path to peace and the two-state solution, with two 
states living side by side in peace and security: the Jewish State of 
Israel and an independent Palestinian State.
    With those goals in mind, the Arab Peace Initiative is a step in 
the right direction toward a comprehensive peace in the Middle East. I 
do not believe that Israel or the Palestinians should have an agreement 
imposed on them. The details included in the Arab Peace Initiative, 
like all details of a peace agreement, will need to be negotiated by 
the parties. Other Arab states seeking normalization with Israel, as 
suggested in the Arab Peace Initiative, is an aspirational goal for a 
comprehensive peace in the Middle East.
    All sides seek a just and lasting peace that will ensure Israel's 
security. If confirmed as Secretary of Defense, I look forward to 
working with Secretary Kerry to assist the administration's efforts 
toward peace.

    350. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, your 2006 comment to Aaron David 
Miller about how ``The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people up 
here'' remains troubling. Do you think that people who advocate for a 
strong U.S.-Israel relationship--whether you call them part of the 
Jewish lobby or the Israel lobby--are advancing the interests of a 
foreign government, namely Israel, above those of the United States?
    Mr. Hagel. In conjunction with his interview with me in 2006, Aaron 
David-Miller also wrote that, ``Hagel is a strong supporter of Israel 
and believer in shared values.''
    As I have stated many times, I regret my unfortunate choice of 
words regarding the Jewish lobby to describe the pro-Israel lobby. I 
believe one of the essential elements of our democracy is that every 
American has the right to express their views to their elected 
officials. In fact, in that same interview with Aaron Miller, I also 
said that ``Everyone has a right to lobby; that's as it should be. Come 
see your Senator, your Congressman, and if you can get the guy to sign 
your letter: great, wonderful.'' I know that the pro-Israel lobby 
includes Jews and non-Jews whom are all Americans supporting Israel 
because it is in the interest of the United States. I consider myself 
to be a pro-Israel American and have supported Israel throughout my 
career because of our shared values and ideals of democracy.
    On expanding U.S.-Israel cooperation, if confirmed, I intend to 
continue to strengthen our bilateral defense relationship in a number 
of ways. These include, but are not limited to, missile defense, 
intelligence sharing, counterterrorism, and maritime security. I know 
that over the past 4 years the administration has taken unprecedented 
steps to expand our cooperation with Israel. Today, with congressional 
support, the United States provides Israel over $3 billion annually in 
Foreign Military Financing (FMF), which is the backbone of our 
commitment to Israel's defense. In addition, President Obama, 
Secretaries Gates and Panetta have worked to provide extensive support 
of over $270 million to Israel for the Iron Dome counter rocket system. 
As Iron Dome has proven itself very well in the field and saved many 
Israeli lives, I intend to continue such support.
    This financial support is complemented by extensive military-to-
military cooperation, including joint exercises. If confirmed, I will 
seek to ensure that we build on this cooperation and expand it into new 
areas as the United States and Israel address emerging threats at this 
time of historic change in the Middle East. I believe we have a 
tremendous opportunity for further expansion of our missile defense 
efforts as well as cooperation in areas like space and cyberspace.
    Finally, the foundation for successful cooperation is the close 
personal relationships U.S. military and defense civilian leaders have 
with Israeli military and defense leadership. Secretary Gates and 
Secretary Panetta, as well as the Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of 
Staff, have all developed very close relationships with their 
counterparts. Continuing with this tradition will be one of my highest 
priorities if I am confirmed. This will be vital to ensuring that we 
understand Israel's defense requirements, and to finding ways to 
address mutual threats that meet our common interests.

    351. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, if not, why did you say that you 
would support the positions of what you called the ``Jewish lobby'' if 
you were an Israeli Senator, but that you couldn't since you were a 
United States Senator who had taken an oath to the United States?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #350.

    352. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, how does that not imply that only 
people loyal to Israel could support the positions of the Jewish lobby?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #350.

    353. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, given your disavowal of this remark 
in your testimony, can you specify how you intend to ``expand the depth 
and breadth of U.S.-Israel cooperation'' as you pledged in your January 
14, 2013, letter to Senator Barbara Boxer?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #350.

    354. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, you have been widely linked in the 
press with your Atlantic Council colleague Charles W. Freeman, who has 
been a vocal supporter of your nomination. Please review paragraph 5 
from Mr. Freeman's May 4, 2011, speech to the Palestine Center in 
Washington, DC. (the transcript and video of the speech are available 
here, if you would like the full context http://
www.thejerusalemfund.org/ht/display/ContentDetails/i/29130/pid/897):
    ``Similarly, the cruelties of Israelis to their Arab captives and 
neighbors, especially in the ongoing siege of Gaza and repeated attacks 
on the people of Lebanon, have cost the Jewish state much of the global 
sympathy that the Holocaust previously conferred on it. The racist 
tyranny of Jewish settlers over West Bank Arabs and the progressive 
emergence of a version of apartheid in Israel itself are deeply 
troubling to a growing number of people abroad who have traditionally 
identified with Israel. Many--perhaps most of the most disaffected--are 
Jews. They are in the process of dissociating themselves from Israel. 
They know that, to the extent that Judaism comes to be conflated with 
racist arrogance (as terrorism is now conflated with Islam), Israeli 
behavior threatens a rebirth of anti-Semitism in the West. Ironically, 
Israel--conceived as a refuge and guarantee against European anti-
Semitism--has become the sole conceivable stimulus to its revival and 
globalization. Demonstrably, Israel has been bad for the Palestinians. 
It is turning out also to be bad for the Jews.''
    Do you consider Mr. Freeman's statement to be an expression of 
mainstream thinking on Israel?
    Mr. Hagel. As I told you at the hearing, I have not spoken with Mr. 
Freeman in several years and do not support his comments. The views 
expressed in the speech by Chas Freeman that you reference are his own, 
and, in my opinion, not accurate.
    I am pleased that Israeli and U.S. leaders agree that the U.S.-
Israel Defense relationship is stronger than ever. I intend to work to 
continue to strengthen the relationship and am looking forward, if 
confirmed, to working closely with my Israeli counterparts.
    As I have said consistently throughout my career, Israel has a 
right to defend itself. Israeli efforts to protect its citizens against 
the actions of terrorist organizations, including Hamas and Hezbollah, 
are part of Israel's right to self-defense. Palestinians will not 
achieve peace or prosperity if Hamas insists on a path of terror and 
rejection, and Palestinians will never realize their independence 
through unilateral actions. I continue to believe, as I did when I 
cosponsored and voted for the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006, 
that any partner for peace must renounce violence, abide by previous 
agreements, and recognize Israel's right to exist. Negotiations between 
the parties are the only viable path to peace and the two-state 
solution, with two states living side by side in peace and security: 
the Jewish State of Israel and an independent Palestinian State.

    355. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, would you affirm that if confirmed, 
you will not recommend the nomination or appointment of Mr. Freeman to 
a position in DOD?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #354.

                      u.s. troops to u.n. mission
    356. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, in a 2009 report that you co-authored 
for the U.S./Middle East Project, you advocated for the deployment of 
U.S. grounds troops as U.N. peacekeepers in a ``non-militarized 
Palestinian state.'' That same year, in a piece for the Atlantic 
Council, you wrote, ``No country today has the power to impose its will 
and values on other nations.'' These statements seem to hearken back to 
2003, when you stated that the United States ``must be careful to avert 
the perception that we are charting a unilateralist course in our 
foreign policy.'' Do you believe the United States needs a ``permission 
slip'' from the U.N. or another international body before it can engage 
in military operations--how would you address this concern?
    Mr. Hagel. I do not believe we need a permission slip from the 
United Nations before we can engage in military operations. The United 
States will always remain committed to protecting its national security 
interests whenever necessary. I believe the United States is strongest 
when we act alongside our partners, with whom we share common 
interests. I also believe the United States should, and will, act 
unilaterally when we must, as we did with the Osama bin Laden raid. In 
every case, we will act in accordance with the standards that govern 
the use of force, which requires a basis in domestic law and compliance 
with international law.

                           ploughshares fund
    357. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, you currently sit on the board of the 
Ploughshares Fund. Among the groups that Ploughshares has supported is 
the National Iranian American Council (NIAC), headed by Trita Parsi. 
Are you aware that the Ploughshares Fund has given more than $600,000 
to NIAC?
    Mr. Hagel. I completely support one of the primary objectives of 
the Ploughshares Fund: preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
    I was not aware that Ploughshares provided financial support to the 
NIAC. The Ploughshares Fund is committed to full transparency, 
publishes all of their funding decisions and complies with all 
applicable laws and best-practices for a 501(c)3 organization.
    My understanding is that the case you referenced focused on a libel 
lawsuit brought by the NIAC and its president, Trita Parsi, against 
writer Seid Hassan Daioleslam. Records of the case do not include the 
phrase ``deep and incontrovertible ties'' to high-level agents of the 
Iranian regime. In fact, Judge John Bates did not analyze or provide 
judgment on any NIAC ties to the Iranian Government. In his judgment, 
Judge Bates explicitly wrote that, ``Nothing in this opinion should be 
construed as a finding that defendant's articles [about NIAC ties to 
the Iranian Government] were true. Defendant did not move for summary 
judgment on that ground, and it has not been addressed here.''

    358. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, are you aware that NIAC has ties to 
the Iranian Government?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #357.

    359. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, are you aware of the September 13, 
2012, decision rendered by Judge John Bates in the U.S. District Court 
in Washington, which exposed NIAC's ``deep and incontrovertible ties'' 
to high-level agents of the Iranian regime?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #357.

                                  cuba
    360. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, in 2002 you referred to Fidel Castro 
as a ``toothless old dinosaur'' and praised former President Jimmy 
Carter's recommended policy of relaxed sanctions and diplomatic 
engagement as ``exactly right''. In 2008, you were a signatory to a 
letter to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice urging the U.S. relax 
sanctions and engage Cuba due to Castro's ``imminent departure''. As of 
February 1, 2013, the Castros have not departed Cuba or shown any 
indication that additional concessions from the United States would 
modify their repressive regime. An American contractor, Alan Gross, 
languishes in a Cuban prison. Do you still believe Mr. Carter's 
recommended policy towards Cuba is ``exactly right''?
    Mr. Hagel. I support President Obama's Cuba policy which is focused 
on supporting the Cuban people's desire to freely determine their 
future, reducing their dependence on the Cuban state, and pursuing the 
widely shared goal of a Cuba that respects the universal human rights 
of all its citizens. The President's actions to facilitate family 
travel, people to people travel, the flow of remittances into private 
hands, and information to, from, and within Cuba have contributed to 
this objective. I share the President's view that the Cuban Government 
must change its outdated political model to reflect the commitments 
undertaken by other governments in the Hemisphere to promote and defend 
representative democracy. Policy matters and other diplomatic issues 
involving Cuba are led by the State Department.

    361. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, would relaxing sanctions and engaging 
with the Castros be the hallmarks of your policy towards Cuba, should 
you be confirmed?
    Mr. Hagel. See answer to Question #360.

                              north korea
    362. Senator Cruz. Mr. Hagel, in a 2003 interview with PBS, you 
declared that isolating North Korea was the last thing the United 
States should do. Despite a decade at attempted engagement and 
negotiations, North Korea remains overtly hostile to the United States 
and is actively pursuing weapons targeted at us and our allies. Given 
North Korea's dismal record on negotiating in good faith, how 
specifically would the additional outreach you advocated in 2003 have 
improved our position in relationship to North Korea today?
    Mr. Hagel. Since my interview with PBS in early 2003, diplomatic 
efforts through the Six-Party Talks led to the September 2005 Joint 
Statement, under which the Six Parties reaffirmed the goal of 
verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and North Korea 
committed to abandoning all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear 
programs. In February 2007, the Six-Party process resulted in North 
Korea's agreement to shut down its Yongbyon nuclear facility in 
exchange for heavy fuel oil and talks aimed at normalization of 
relations with the United States and Japan. President Obama extended 
his hand to North Korea at the start of his administration in 2009. 
Although these engagement efforts have not significantly diminished 
North Korea's belligerence or pursuit of nuclear weapons, they have 
united the international community, including China, against North 
Korea's irresponsible behavior.
    If confirmed, I would continue to support diplomatic engagement and 
ensure that our military provides the deterrence and defense necessary 
to create a stable regional environment where diplomacy can succeed. If 
confirmed, I will also ensure that we have the capabilities necessary 
in the Asia-Pacific theater to deter and, if necessary, defeat, North 
Korean aggression.
                                 ______
                                 
    [The nomination reference of the Hon. Charles T. Hagel 
follows:]
                    Nomination Reference and Report
                           As In Executive Session,
                               Senate of the United States,
                                                  January 22, 2013.
    Ordered, That the following nomination be referred to the Committee 
on Armed Services:
    Charles Timothy Hagel, of Nebraska, to be Secretary of Defense, 
vice Leon E. Panetta.
                                 ______
                                 
    [The biographical sketch of Hon. Charles T. Hagel, which 
was transmitted to the committee at the time the nomination was 
referred, follows:]
            Biographical Sketch of Senator Charles T. Hagel
Education:
         Honorary Doctorate Degrees:
                 Georgetown University, College of William and 
                Mary, Marymount University, Creighton University, 
                Bellevue University, Doane College, Midland Lutheran 
                College, and North Central College

         University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE
                 Bachelor of Arts Degree in General Studies, 
                1971

         Brown Institute for Radio and Television, Minneapolis, 
        MN
                 Degree in Radio and Television Broadcasting, 
                1966

         Kearney State College, Kearney, NE
                 January 1965-December 1965

         Wayne State College, Wayne, NE
                 September 1964-December 1964
Employment record:
         Vietnam War Commemoration Advisory Committee, 
        Arlington, VA
                 Chairman, July 2012-present

         President's Intelligence Advisory Board
                 Co-Chairman, 2009-present

         Atlantic Council, Washington, DC
                 Chairman and Board of Directors
                 February 2009-present

         Defense Policy Board
                 Member, July 2009-present

         President's China 100,000 Strong Initiative
                 Co-Chairman, 2010-2012

         Department of Energy Blue Ribbon Commission on 
        America's Nuclear Future
                 Commissioner, 2009-2011

         Georgetown University
                 Distinguished Professor of National 
                Governance, School of Foreign Service
                 February 2009-present

         Deutsche Bank America, New York, NY
                 Advisory Board Member
                 May 2009-present

         Corsair Capital, New York, NY
                 Advisory Board Member
                 February 2009-present

         McCarthy Capital, Omaha, NE
                 Senior Advisor
                 February 2009-present

         Wolfensohn & Company, New York, NY
                 Director
                 March 2009-December 2010

         Pfizer Boards, New York, NY
                 Advisory Board Member
                 February 2009-December 2010

         Zurich Insurance Group, Zurich in North America, 
        Washington, DC
                 Board of Directors
                 February 2009-present

         M.I.C. Industries, Reston, VA
                 Special Advisor to the Chairman
                 March 2009-present

         National Interest Security Company, Fairfax, VA
                 Board Member
                 March 2009-November 2010

         Elite Training & Security, Fairfax, VA
                 Board Member
                 March 2009-November 2010

         Kasemen, LLC, Fairfax, VA
                 Board Member
                 March 2009-November 2010

         BP Petroleum, Washington, DC
                 Advisor
                 June 2009-March 2010

         Chevron Corporation, San Ramon, CA
                 Board of Directors
                 April 2010-present

         Gallup, Washington, DC
                 Senior Advisor
                 July 2011-present

         Washington Speakers Bureau, Alexandria, VA
                 Speaker
                 February 2009-present

         U.S. Senate
                 1997-2009, Two Terms, State of Nebraska
                 Senate Foreign Relations Committee
                 Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs 
                Committee
                 Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
                 Chairman, Senate Foreign Relations 
                Subcommittee on International Economic Policy, Export 
                and Trade Promotion
                 Chairman, Senate Banking Subcommittee on 
                International Trade and Finance
                 Senate Banking Subcommittee on Securities and 
                Investment
                 Chairman, Congressional-Executive Commission 
                on China
                 Chairman, Senate Climate Change Observer Group
Honors and awards:
         Global Leadership Award from the International Student 
        House, 2012
         World Affairs Council of Washington DC International 
        Public Service Award in Recognition of Outstanding Global 
        Leadership
         2nd Degree Order of Dostyk Award from the President & 
        Government of Kazakhstan
         Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund's Charles ``Mac'' 
        Mathias Award
         Knight Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit of the 
        Federal Republic of Germany
         Commander's Cross With Star of the Order of Merit of 
        The Republic of Poland
         Brown College Distinguished Alumni Award, 2010
         Clifford P. Case Professor of Public Affairs at 
        Rutgers University, 2010
         Ralph J. Bunch Award for Diplomatic Excellence from 
        the Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training, 2010
         Citigroup Foundation Lecturer at the University of 
        Michigan's Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, 2009
         Third Annual Eugene J. McCarthy Lecturer at St. John 
        University Minnesota, 2009
         Junior Statesman of the Year Foundation Award, 2009
         Committee on Education Funding Special Recognition 
        Award, 2009
         Aspen Institute Strategy Group Leadership Award, 2008
         First annual Cordell Hull Award
         Horatio Alger Award from the Horatio Alger Association
         Vietnam Veterans of America Legislator of the Year 
        Award
         Center for the Study of the Presidency's Distinguished 
        Service Medal
         American Farm Bureau Federation's Golden Plow Award
         Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of 
        Nebraska at Omaha
         Secretary of Defense's Medal for Outstanding Civic 
        Achievement
         First World USO Leadership Award
         University of Nebraska-Kearney George W. Norris 
        Distinguished Lecturer Award
         Congressional Award from the Paralyzed Veterans of 
        America, 2008
         United Nations Association of the United States of 
        America's Congressional Leadership Award
         Millard E. Tydings Award for Courage and Leadership in 
        American Politics from the University of Maryland, 2008
         National Urban League Congressional Leadership Award, 
        2008
         Distinguished Service Award for International 
        Statesmanship from the International Relations Council of 
        Kansas City, 2007
         Luminosity Award from the Bonnie J. Addario Breath 
        Away from the Cure Foundation, 2006
         National Farmers Union Golden Triangle Award, 2006
         University of Nebraska at Omaha's Alumni Award for 
        Excellence in Public Service, 2006
         Don Wagner Leadership Award, 2006
         Omaha World-Herald's 2005 ``Midlander of the Year'' 
        Award
         Marlin Fitzwater Excellence in Public Communication 
        Award, 2005
         Woodrow Wilson International Cen