Iran, Iraq, Russia discussed on Overnight re-air of day's programming


But I think we are very well line, and we're very focused on exactly the challenge that you have outlined center. I look forward to hearing more about that in a closed setting general hotel on on February third President Trump announced that we would keep troops in Iraq to quote watch over. Iran has our military focus their shifted from ISIS to Iran. It has not Senator glad to hear that. I am concerned with the response in Iraq. As you probably know Iraqi, President Salih responded, very quickly saying that the president of the United States didn't ask Iraq about this. Are you at all concerned that Iraq will now be skeptical of our motivations for being there? And how will that perception affect our ability to relocate US troops from Syria to Iraq? Senator I am. But this is not particularly found. I think the the government of Iraq understands the relationship with a view that we have on on on Iran and understands our concerns with Iran and a variety of destabilizing activities, they conduct around the region. But having said that our mission our military mission on the ground remains, very focused on on the reason that the government of Iraq asked us to come there, and that is focusing on the defeat of ISIS, and now preventing the resurgence of that particular organization. Let me just a little bit too to Russia general vote no on January thirtieth Russia pledged to support Iraq in its fight against ISIS in preparation for the United States withdrawal from Syria. What's your current perception of Russian influence in Iraq? I think right now Russia has limited influence right now in Iraq. Do we have plans or strategy for for maintaining for countering that Russian influence once withdraw from serious complete? Why I don't have. I don't have any specific military tasks that are related to that Senator. But what I would highlight is that one of the most effective tools that we have is being good reliable partners on the ground. And that is that is what we intend to do. And that has always been our approach with the country country of Iraq focused on what they have asked us to do. And then being very reliable reliable partners to them. Jaren. I'm gonna yell my time. Thank you. Be chairman of centre, Scott, please. Thanks for all your hard work. Thank you. Thank you for your service. We met I met the other day with some opposition leaders from Syria, and while they express some concern about exactly how the which withdrawal would happen. They did ask if what the ability wouldn't be to do a no fly zone afterwards, which they thought would have a have a positive impact of keeping Turkey in place. Have you considered that it said doable? We again, we're we're looking at a variety of options that I'll be happy to talk about in a closed session right here. I would not characterize what we're looking at right now is a no fly zone. Right. What do you think why? Why do you believe Russia's continuing to to be involved in in Syria? What's their strategic advantage for them to be involved suggest to cause problems for us strategic interests? They have Russia does have some long term interests that they've had in Syria that go back some some ways, but certainly part of their motivation is by making sure they have warm water access into the Mediterranean, and the access of that provides they're interested in preserving that they're interested in preserving the regime that is friendly and supportive to their motives and interests. And I also believe that they they share an interest in trying to subvert our influence and interest in in the region and come commander general Joseph hotel do think they see that as an opportunity for them. And I think they are attempting to explain that. After President Trump made the announcement withdrawal. Have you seen Turkey take different action on the ground? Is there anything they're they're doing that causes you concern? I think. Sorry. I think we probably can talk a little bit more about that in a closed session. But I win general would I would tell you as we've seen all actors. Begin to posture themselves for what for what might come. And and we've seen that on all sides. I'm finished. Scott. We're not used to such subtle and penetrating questions. Thank you. Senator Jones on behalf the center nickel. Thank you. Senator reed. Thank you general for your service echo that. And also for all of the team that is behind you. Well aware that your success is only as good as the success of those that serve with you. And I use that term appropriately as opposed to the chain of command below you. They serve with you. And I appreciate all of the folks sitting behind you and all of those that are still over there. So Alabama democratic Senator Doug Jones, I wanna follow up briefly with. Kind of a question that Senator Shaheen ask about the CNN report of? Our military equipment somehow getting into the hands of others. But I want to come out of the a little bit different way. Last year. You stated that due to political considerations cost or delivery speed. Some of our partners are seeking alternate sources of military equipment from near peer competitors. Like Russia and China when our partners go. Elsewhere, it reduces our interoperatability and challenges our ability to incorporate their contributions into theater effort. I think it's critical that we allow our practices with what is necessary to chief these goals as you alluded to and we want our partners to to come to us. We're particularly concerned when they are going to communist, China communist Russia to get that. Because we're seeing around the world the influence of those countries. So my question is does this challenge persists persists today? And if so that you please talk a little bit more about those challenges or barriers that exist. Our partners coming us for a quick moment. And what steps do you believe we need to take in order to keep them coming to us rather than? Communist Russia and communist China center. Thank you. To to some extent, they do continue to exist today. I certainly recognize it our foreign military sales for military funding process must be delivered at one we should make very deliberate decisions about the things that we sell to people. And and that has to go through a process. I am concerned that the process is is lengthy and is not as responsive as our partners require on the ground. And so I am very much in support of trying to look at how we make those processes more more responsive to the needs that they have on the ground. I think we should always strive for that. We had there are a lot of steps that go through that we go through to provide equipment to people. Some of them are within the department of defense, some of them within department state, and certainly some over here in congress. And so to the extent that we can have a more rapid process to answer answer, the requirements of our partners. I think that would be beneficial in some cases, if we're not going to provide things to them, we should be very honest with them upfront and tell them we're not going to be. I think it's always better to give them a yes or no answer than it is to to string them along. Because I think that leads to more frustration for our partners. And it does cause them to go to other things. I also think key part of this is our work on the ground beforehand with with our partners. This is within the military here is making sure that the things that they that they are asking meet the needs of each of their countries in their own in their own defense and. We should try to steer them away from just buying things that they can't maintain. They can't sustain. They can't man long-term, and we should be focused on the equipment that they can and equipment that can be integrated with us and other partners in the region to provide a more formidable deterrent effect or a defense if needed. Thank you. Thank you, sir. So with regard to the Iran nuclear deal looks like we're out how will US withdraw from the Iran. Nuclear deal affect our posture. In the area of responsibility. I don't know that that the withdrawal from from the Iran deal will specifically impact impact our posture. Our posture will be more driven by the national defense strategy than won't be by a decision to. To the to the park from the from the JCP away. I would just add that is I look across the region. Iran is does does continue to present concerns to me it is it is one of the major it is the major destabilizing factor in the region. And so while the nuclear weapons program is one aspect of the threat that they presented their facilitation of ballistic missiles of unmanned aerial systems of other lethal materials to their proxies in Yemen in in Syria in Iraq, other places here, I think should give us very very significant 'cause they're continued efforts to exercise control over critical waterways. I think should give us a continued caused Iran continues to present threats to us. Across the region. And as we look at implementing the national defense strategy, and I agree with the focus on great power competition. My best advice, the backup through my chain of command will be to ensure that we do retain sufficient capabilities insufficient response capabilities to deal with the deal with the threats that remain in the Centcom area of responsibility. Right. Well, thank you started. Thank you very much. This is she's read radio programming from WCBS bay from Washington. Thank you on behalf of chairman and folically. Thank you very much. Thank you for being here. Thank you again for your service. I want to stay on that same topic about the national defense strategy and Iran, and and just explore some of the tensions that the national defense strategy creates for your area of operation. So can I just ask you in your judgment? Are we in a position to remove draw down forces move forces from your area of operation to Asia or Europe in accord with the national defense strategies priorities on great power competition with China and Russia in the position to do that. And also engage if necessary Iran should. Should that nation provoke a conflict with us? Or should they continue to excel further their uranium enrichment program the center, the national defense staticy necessarily puts focus on the United States, regaining its competitive advantage against great powers, Russia and China in this particular case, I agree with that. And and we are absolutely supportive of that from Centcom standpoint. And we do recognize that that will necessitate some change in our posture in the region, and as we kind of go through the discussions and the planning aspects of that with the joint staff with OS SD, and certainly with the services, we will we will we will seek to maintain the capabilities that we need to and then ensure that we have the right response capabilities to address threats as as as they present themselves in this area. Let me just ask you a little bit more about that. At the initial strategy calls for more efficient ways of operating in the greater Middle East. East in your area of operational authority the idea being again to maintain enabled us to maintain a focus on Iran and terrorists there and also to shift attention towards a great power conflict. Can you tell me about your plans to make operations in your area of responsibility, more efficient? What does what does that mean? What does that look like, can you give us a tangible sense of certainly certainly one of the one of the areas where we can continue to be more efficient is how we operate along. Our seems are bureaucratic combatant commander seems with me I share I share a boundary with you com- to the north. I share one with Africom to the west and with Indo Pakong to the east. So I think it is it is extraordinarily important as we look at managing resources that we look at positioning and employing these resources in a way that they can be of the maximum utility to multiple combatant commands and today, we actually do that with some of our some of our resources in in the region. You might be aware, for example, that Africom supports us with basing that we require for our activities, Arabian peninsula, and the ran the resources that we have their benefit both general Waldhauser and his command..

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