Pentagon, Google., Secretary discussed on FUTURE STATE



Mike comes in to me one morning and says Sir the Defense Digital Service which is what this group is called has put all their furniture out in the hallway. What do you want me to and I such as just leave him alone? Just take it away. They wanted an open space. You know so you're at the Pentagon's like like World War Two. They're these big leather chairs with brass tacks in them and big meeting. I remember when I worked there. You could do something called midnight requisitioning which maybe if you stayed around midnight you could go get yourself a nice leather somewhere way you know there were ashtrays on every table when I started out there and you'd throw open the windows in the springtime now let the springtime area not anymore no not anymore but you know the old saw where always ready to fight the last war and and I <hes> despite what you did to cause people to think about the future and and in technology and that's a big boat to turn around and I look at the navy for example with all these big aircraft carriers that just seemed to me to be targets <hes> L. I ask we're spending huge amounts of money to defend these aircraft carriers so that they can do what you know have forty eight air little F. Eighteen airplanes that can drop bombs and it just seemed to me that some of the services are still fighting the last war well yeah you do install all the base of equipment that lasts for thirty forty years so give you another example come back to the carrier rebuilding the Joint Strike Fighter now and I'm for that and I worked really hard to make that less. It was a mess when I started out as acquisitions are <hes> <hes> and it will have thirty forty five year lifetime. I doubt they'll be a follow on man tactical. You think you're the last human piloted aircraft yes technical tactical aircraft. Yes <hes> now you ask what the aircraft F carrier in a high end China Russia. Maybe Iran you're absolutely right. It's going to be increasingly difficult and has this has been true for some years to just been sure the survivability let alone the effectiveness of aircraft carrier begins those kind of enemies anywhere near their shores so fair point. I still think there will be a role however for some aircraft carriers when it comes to the Afghanistan's the series the Iraq's so if you partition things in to high end and low end they'll still be a low end role. Now you're right about fighting the last were in another sense yeah. That's been true on the other hand I would say if I if I name the biggies today for me China Russia Iran North Korea terrorism and I say well all of those are pretty big headache and I don't skinny down the list and try to simplify things. I've got these five headaches and that was my approach <hes>. I think they're each going to change. They'll be artificial intelligence. They'll be more cyber stuff. There may be bio <hes> terrorism though so these things will change but I'll bet you those same categories will be around for those same places will be problematic <hes> for awhile at Bob Gates it's my wonderful predecessor in great mentor and Friend of Mine Great Secretary of Defense and a great director Central Intelligence and Deputy National Security Advisor to <hes> Bob used to as before he became secretary defense as a former D._C._i.. I get applause with a line that went like this. <hes> we've never once predicted where we fought now. This is something you could say in the nineteen nineties and then he'd talk about Grenada and and so I remember Grenada and I do too <hes> and so they should show at right <hes> and so that's a great line however there's one thing that is not accurate about although Bob didn't mean it this way which is it's could suggest to people that are two presence in Europe or in South Korea because word in breakout but those are wars. We prepared for they didn't happen. That's not not a failure story. That's a success story. We knew where they were going to happen. Then we went there and prevented it yeah and so that's the big story of the American military of the last seven years and that is overwhelmingly a triumph of prediction and and prevention. It's not the war it's peace the peace in Japan Peace in Europe. You'd ever get credit for things that didn't happen. I I remember being part nearly nineteen nineties of the so-called nunn-lugar program fact I ran that program and that was a program. It was intended to to win the Soviet Union disintegrated to make sure the nuclear arsenal of the first ever nuclear state to fall apart didn't also fall apart pretty important mission carried out successfully not just because the United States participated in but above all because the Soviet former Soviet custodians did but it was successful and if you tell people that now it sounds like you're giving history lesson yeah but on the other hand there were twenty thousand nuclear weapons they could. Of ended up anywhere yeah so you talked about the future wars involving artificial intelligence and cyber so let's talk about this <hes>. I think a lot of people have a notion that <hes> we're going to turn over control of weapons to Algorithms Algorithms and algorithms are going to make decisions about who to attack. We're talking about cooperation with Silicon Valley and yet <hes> there was this incident at Google. <hes> were <hes> they were involved. Google was going to be involved. I don't know if they were in an artificial intelligence. They were they were and <hes> and some Google employee said we don't want to be involved. <hes> with the Pentagon and I think they were afraid of being part of an artificial intelligence program Graham that we'd go off on its own <hes> you know and and figure out what the target was and kill it <hes> we're not really developing that are we know and and I offered to talk to two Google employees. We concluded on balanced that probably will go to wait and do that. Another time. They were mistaken in my judgment and I think man their management was mistaken to change what they were doing. As a consequence that first of all that was not all google employees or a lot of Google in blazers some Google employees and that's fine. They're entitled to their point of view however I don't agree with your point of view and here's how I would reason with them. I would say to them first of all and this needs to be said good on you your thinking morally that is perfectly appropriate. I want to associate myself with you in that regard and by the way you should think that way about everything that Google does that would be normal well okay and then second I would say as far as your government is concerned in the battlefield. I want you to know that we take our values to the battlefield. I tell you that as the former secretary trey defense by the way Dick you may know this or may not but in twenty twelve when I was deputy secretary of Defense I issued what is still the extent guidance to the Department of Defense on so-called autonomous is weapons which says they will not exist says the must be human not in the loop involved in decision making. I only make that correction because other in the loop is not really technically possible at suggests a person in a chip in a circuit. Did you know that that can literally be right involved in decision making <hes> because that is morally necessary. It is operationally totally practical number three. I would say the <hes> on the contrary very. Are you comfortable working for the P._L._A.. Because you do Chinese People's Liberation Army because you don't know when you work in China which your company does whether because they don't tell you who died and the last thing I'd say to them is do you really take for granted. Everything that's around you. You have a company you drive. You drove to work today on a road that somebody made that's public project. You have employees who come in who can read and write. That's a public project. You're defended if I may say so by the department Iran and that seems like a pretty necessary thing. The government isn't some extraneous factor Dr it is how we do things that must be done collectively and if you don't like the way it's being done or distrust Wade's being done getting the game. How are we ever going to do the right thing on a I if people like you you don't get involved in it? I became involved in the government because I was a physicist and at that time star wars nuclear weapons were going on and I didn't always agree with what the government was doing but I felt like I had a responsibility ons ability to participate so that's the argument I would make to them. I share that view and I got involved in the government. <hes> straight out of college Undergrad went to work at the Pentagon S. four years of my life I think in some ways <hes> but those this where the years in the immediate aftermath of the Vietnam War and I was Vietnam war protesters and people didn't understand why are you going to work in the Pentagon us. The enemy has no. It's not the enemy that's us. Yes and the only way you prevent bad things from happening is by being involved. Yes you're so right. I I had the same attitude that I still have today and it's what I tell young people including Google irs. I say you get in if you if you want it to turn out right get in the game. There's no it's the only government we got. You can't go down the street and shopping another store and Donald trump will forever be president so these days I particularly get the question you made to from young people all the time and and I tell them yes no particular president will be here <hes> forever <hes> but this is your country. There's no alternative and you're not gonNA get your way all the time <hes> but go ahead and give it a shot and I get so frustrated with people who my model of the clueless is the wealthy businessmen who drives his lexus around simultaneously complaining about paint his taxes and the potholes now exactly when I swore <hes> the oath for the first time in the Pentagon Richard Nixon was the president <hes> and need. I say what I thought of Richard Nixon at the time I think the people should still go in <hes> because you can do good at any level in the government <hes> Roy Math Buckley Apropos Richard Nixon nurture Nixon's after my time but <HES> <hes> before my time rather but we met Buckley said he he was being asked by the F._B._i.. The question you've heard a million times asked about colleagues that they've asked you which is <hes>. It's the last question in a long security questionnaire. <hes> is there anything about Mr so and so <hes> that might embarrass the president and Buckley said about this colleague if his and Richard Nixon being president at the time he said in his best pseudo British accent <hes>. I should think the reverse is more likely. You're so we have this policy. Would you put in place <hes> on a I but I'm not sure other countries will yeah <hes> and so we have these fictionalised scenarios. I'm sure you're red. Ghost Fleet in there's great book <hes> where there's a hyper war a war that takes place really fast <hes> with hypersonic weapons with Cyber Weapons <hes> and with artificial intelligence making decisions <hes> if not on our side at least on the other aside <hes> how much of that is science fiction and how much of that is the next door I think the the speed and the automatic AC- of the weapons Israel <hes> but I think the opportunity for human responsibility and leadership is there <hes> and we'll continue to be they're not in the sense of as I said being a chip in the circuit but we've got to be the best that which means we have to have thought through the best field the best stuff the stuff that will dominate that is a creation of human thought and strategic wisdom and I think if we have that and we have good technology technology the best technology which I think we is within our Ken to have we'll win. Whatever form it takes there still will be a sense of victory? <hes> this will be a human war. One for human purpose in there is going to be human winter and human loser in the winner is GonNa be us and even when we talk about cyber wars cyber wars not going to take place in a vacuum. It's not GonNa Take Place just in cyberspace. It'll be part of an overall war. <hes> and I know oh you've thought so much instill now at Harvard Kennedy School at the Belfer Center thinking so much about cyber war but when you we talked about this earlier when you turn to the Cyber Command and said do something and go after Isis <hes> for me you were disappointed with the results I was is another story. I told in the book <hes> it was a managerial issue <hes> for me and <hes> making us us the best at cyber warfare is is to me a necessity and he's one of those areas where only the secretary of defense can lead that future and yes. I thought we had more. They're inside calm than we proved to have. When it was time to go after Isis now think about isis the these are barbarians?.

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