JOSEPH R. BIDEN, JR., Delaware JESSE HELMS, North Carolina PAUL S. SARBANES, Maryland RICHARD G. LUGAR, Indiana ALAN CRANSTON, California NANCY L. KASSEBAUM, Kansas CHRISTOPHER J. DODD, Connecticut LARRY PRESSLER, South Dakota JOHN F. KERRY, Massachusetts FRANK H. MURKOWSKI, Alaska PAUL SIMON, Illinois MITCH MCCONNELL, Kentucky TERRY SANFORD, North Carolina HANK BROWN, Colorado DANIEI, P. MOYNIHAN, New York JAMES M. JEFFORDS, Vermont CHARLES S. ROBB, Virginia HARRIS WOFFORD, PennsylvaniaGERALD B. CHRISTIANSON, Staff Director
PAUL S. SARBANES, Maryland LARRY PRESSLER, South Dakota PAUL SIMON, Illinois HANK BROWN, ColoradoCONTENTS MARCH 20, 1991
Page Bartholomew, Reginald, Under Secretary or State for International Security Affairs.............................................................. 6 Prepared statement................................................... 7 Hadley, Stephen J., Assistant Secretary of Defense, International Security Policy............................................................... 8 Prepared statement................................................... 9 Lehman, Ronald F., II, Director, U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency 4 JULY 11, 1991 Baker, James A., III, Secretary of State.................................. 39 Prepared statement................................................... 44 Kerry, John F., U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, prepared statement....... 38 Lugar, Richard G., U.S. Senator from Indiana, prepared statement.......... 31 McConnell, Mitch, U.S. Senator from Kentucky, prepared statement.......... 36 JULY 16, 1991 Cheney, Richard B., Secretary of Defense.................................. 81 Dailey, John R., Assistant Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps.................. 131 Kelso, Frank B. II, Chief of Naval Operations, U.S. Navy.................. 129 McConnell, Mitch, U.S. Senator from Kentucky, prepared statement.......... 126 McPeak, Merrill A.. Chief of Staff, U.S. Air Force........................ 130 Powell, Colin L., Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff......................... 85 Prepared statement................................................... 89 Reimer, Dennis J., Vice Chief of Staff, U.S. Army......................... 131 JULY 17, 1991 Kerr, Richard, Deputy Director, Central Intelligence Agency............... 145 Prepared statement................................................... 149 JULY 25, 1991 Galvin, John R., Commander in Chief, European Command..................... 162 Prepared statement................................................... 165 Lehman, Ronald P., II, Director, U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency 195 Prepared statement................................................... 196 Lugar, Richard G., U.S. Senator from Indiana, prepared statement.......... 193 Parker, Robert W., Director, On-Site Inspection Agency, U.S. Air Force.... 168 Prepared statement................................................... 169 Woolsey, R. James, U.S. Representative to the Negotiation on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe.................................................... 200 Prepared statement................................................... 200 IV APPENDIX Questions Asked by Senator Biden and Responses Thereto...................... 217 Questions Asked by Senator Pell and Responses Thereto...................... 217 Questions Asked of Secretary Bartholomew and Responses Thereto.............. 218 Questions Asked of Secretary Baker and Responses Thereto.................... 219 Additional Questions Asked by Senator Biden and Responses Thereto........... 225 Questions Asked by Senator Pell for the Administration and Responses Thereto.................................................................. 225 Questions Asked of Ambassador Woolsey by Senator Biden and Responses Thereto.................................................................. 233 Questions Asked of Ambassadors Woolsey and Lehman by Senator Pell and Responses Thereto........................................................ 243 Questions Asked of General Parker by Senator Pell and Responses Thereto..... 250 Questions Asked of Ambassadors Lehman and Woolsey by Senator Helms and Responses Thereto........................................................ 253 Questions Asked of Secretary Baker by Senator Helms and Responses Thereto... 255 Questions Asked by Senator Helms and Responses Thereto...................... 255 Questions Asked of Secretary Cheney and Chairman Powell by Senator Pressler and Responses Thereto.................................................... 260 Questions Asked of Ambassador Woolsey by Senator Pressler and Responses Thereto.................................................................. 262 Questions Asked of Secretary Baker by Senator Cranston and Responses Thereto.................................................................. 263 Questions Asked of Secretary Baker by Senator Riegle and Responses Thereto.. 264 Additional Questions Asked by Senator Helms and Responses Thereto........... 266 Questions From Senators Pell and Helms and Unclassified Responses Thereto... 270 Questions Asked of General Galvin by Senator Pell and Responses Thereto..... 290 Letter from Senator Biden to Hon. James A. Baker III........................ 293 Questions for Secretary Baker from Senator BIDEN............................ 293 Letter from from James A. Baker III to Senator BIDEN....................... 294 Questions Asked of Secretary Baker by Senator Biden and Responses Thereto... 295 Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) by LTC Don Crawford.............. 301 Letters From: Jonathan Dean, Union of Concerned Scientists.............................. 315 Stanley R. Resor.......................................................... 318 Harold Brown, Chairman, Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced Internation- al Studies.............................................................. 320 Paul C. Warnke, Clifford and Warnke....................................... 320 Robert S. McNamara........................................................ 321 Melvin R. Laird........................................................... 321 Frank C. Carlucci, The Carlyle Group...................................... 322 Elliot L. Richardson, Milbank, Tweed, Hadley and McCloy................... 323 Lee Feinstein, assistant director for research, Arms Control Association.. 323 Paul K. Davis, corporate research manager, RAND........................... 327 John Issacs, president, Council for a Livable World, and other organiza- tions................................................................... 337 Jerome Walker, senior associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace................................................................... 338 Statement of Ambassador R. James Woolsey, Chief of the U.S. Delegation to the Negotiation on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe.................... 344 Budgetary and Military Consequences of the CFE Treaty: An Update............ 345 Dispute Over Treaty Counting Rules (Article 111) and Resolution............. 361 Statement of the Chairman of the Joint Consultative Group-Oct. 18,1991...... 364 Joint Press Statement on Negotiations Between Government Delegations of Ukraine and the Russian Federation-Oct. 30, 1991.......................... 365 Soviet Pre-Treaty Withdrawals Beyond the Urals.............................. 366
STATUS OF THE CFE TREATY
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 20, 1991
U.S. SENATE, SUBCOMMITTEE ON EUROPEAN AFFAIRS
OF THE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS,
The subcommittee met at 3:05 p.m., pursuant to notice, in room
S-116, the Capitol, Hon. Joseph R. Biden, Jr. (chairman of the subcommittee)
presiding. Present: Senator Biden.
Senator BIDEN. Today, the Subcommittee on European Affairs will hear from administration representatives regarding the Status of the CFE Treaty which was signed last November and which Secretary Baker discussed with President Gorbachev over the weekend.
This committee, which will have jurisdiction over the CFE Treaty, if and when it is submitted to the Senate for advice and consent, is pleased to have with us today President Bush's first team, and the first team not only on this, but the whole subject of arms control.
Until recently, arms control was moving steadily forward. The Soviet leadership had signaled a profound commitment to arms control progress by making concession after concession in the INF Treaty, the CFE Treaty, and the START Treaty, and things looked like they were moving along pretty well.
Unfortunately it appears that this attitude is waning, at least from this Senator's perspective, on the part of the Soviets.
In recent months the Soviet leadership has refused to move in our direction or in the direction, quite frankly, that it should move, that it agreed to move. And in at least one case they have moved backward, seeking to reinterpret a key provision of the CFE Treaty. This new attitude means that Reggie Bartholomew will have to settle everything.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Forgive me, I was in the next room.
Senator BIDEN. This new attitude means we face a new challenge to craft positions that uphold our principles, but still provide a more recalcitrant Soviet leadership with incentives to come to terms, lest we return to the strategic stalemate we all remember from the early 1980's.
As Secretary Baker said on Sunday, the CFE Treaty is the key to unlocking not only valuable cuts in conventional arms, but also progress on other fronts.
But here we confront the Gordian Knot. Both the Kremlin and the White House take the position that the Moscow summit should not occur until the START Treaty can be completed. Not an unreasonable position on the surface.
Meanwhile, Secretary Baker has indicated that START cannot be finished until problems with CFE are resolved. And thus, both the summit and START appear to be dependent upon progress and resolution of the CFE Treaty.
Yet, it can also be argued that only by having the summit can we cause President Gorbachev to be sufficiently seized with CFE as to overrule his military on the reinterpretation of article III.
This is a catch-22 without any humor, and the question is how do we move? Meanwhile, some members of the Senate are pushing for withdrawal from the ABM Treaty, a new phenomenon. You gentlemen know as well as anyone that the Soviet leadership regards the ABM Treaty as a central issue in our relationship.
Gorbachev himself has clearly demonstrated his commitment to the ABM Treaty and the consequences of its demise.
In any case, it is not an overstatement in my view to suggest that we are at a critical moment in U.S.-Soviet relations, indeed, a pivotal moment in history, with years of effort and the most important arms agreements ever conceived hanging in the balance at this moment.
Turning to the specific topic of this hearing, the CFE Treaty, I believe its implementation would serve American security very well in several ways.
First, politically and psychologically, it will codify the Soviet's new thinking in Europe by locking in, in a legally binding, way, a situation by which the Soviets can be held accountable for major reductions in Soviet forces and their withdrawal from Europe.
Second, it will set up a verification system, unprecedented in size and scope to permit American and European inspectors to determine what Soviet equipment has been removed or destroyed; where any permanent equipment is located; and whether any movement of forces is occurring that could signal a dangerous reversal in Soviet policy.
These institutions of verification will mean regular interaction between military officers from all the countries of Europe, a process that will not only ease tensions and head off problems, but also build a confidence that will allow arms reductions to proceed further.
Now I would imagine that the countries of Eastern Europe, members of the just disbanded Warsaw Pact, are essentially looking forward to such a system of inspection. They will be looking, not so much to the West, but to the East.
And third, the treaty will require the Soviet side to destroy many more conventional arms than would otherwise be the case. Unclassified estimates have suggested that 20,000 pieces of equipment will have to be destroyed, some 7,000 of which will be main battle tanks and the other 80,000, tanks and equipment withdrawn from Europe can never be returned because of the Soviet relocations outside the treaty area, which we did not anticipate and which did not violate the treaty.
These reductions are less than we originally hoped for, but they are significant nonetheless. Meanwhile, the treaty will require only marginal cuts in NATO's holdings, with few if any reductions in American equipment.
And finally, success in CFE will mean quicker action on START, on the reduction of nuclear arms in Europe, on further arms control efforts generally.
If these accords can be completed, then the hopes raised by the end of the cold war can be fulfilled through tangible reductions in U.S.-Soviet arms competition. But the CFE Treaty is now in jeopardy Secretary Baker has advised the President not to submit the treaty for ratification until several disputes have been resolved. But today, we hope that our witnesses will shed some light on whether the meetings in Moscow produced progress on these issues. it is my impression that all but one of the issues are now of quite a technical nature, and not important enough to warrant delaying ratification. But I want to hear if that is correct.
The Soviet Union is at this moment espousing what might be called a broad interpretation of article III of the CFE Treaty. The Soviets argue that some 3,500 pieces of equipment should be excluded from the required reductions on the grounds that they have labeled it, quote, "naval equipments."
Ironically, the Soviet claim resembles the claim made by a former State Department legal adviser when the Reagan administration sought to invent a broad interpretation of article V of the ABM Treaty.
The earlier broad interpretation was a matter of considerable dispute, not only between the United States and the Soviet Union, but also between the Senate and the administration.
But on the current matter there is no dispute within the U.S. Government. I believe it is fair to say that all Senators, at least all who are familiar with this issue, agree wholeheartedly with the administration's position, and fully and completely reject the Soviet view.
Today I hope to discuss with our witnesses the best way to resolve the problem, and I have suggested that one way to increase the pressure on President Gorbachev to overrule his military is for the Senate to approve the treaty, subject to the condition that it be implemented only with the strict interpretation of article III now accepted by all CFE signatories other than the Soviet Union.
This approach would not mean that the United States has ratified the treaty prematurely. The Senate does not ratify treaties, only the executive branch does, pursuant to Senate consent.
What it would mean is that we would equip President Bush to go to the ratification table and say, in effect, I have gained approval to ratify this treaty and would do so today or at any time you, the Soviet leadership, would agree to an interpretation acceptable to other signatories.
I would say to our witnesses and we can discuss this today, that by so doning the Senate would have strengthened President Bush's hand in this critical diplomatic task.
Through Senate support of the administration we would, I believe, help force President Gorbachev to choose, with the whole world Watching, whether he accepts the treaty or lets it die. For him this decision would be tantamount to choosing between being a responsible partner in a new Europe governed by international law or returning to the days when the Soviet Union was an outcast from the Western community of nations.
How to achieve a new Soviet position on article III of the CFE Treaty and pave the way for arms control progress on many fronts is the issue on our agenda today.
And I welcome our witnesses and ask that they proceed in any way they deem appropriate. We are pleased and flattered that you would all come up to fill us in on what is happening. I truly appreciate your efforts and your work thus far on this treaty.
Mr. LEHMAN. Perhaps I should begin. I have a short
statement, I can present it, and then we can go on to Ambassador Bartholomew
and Secretary Hadley.
Senator BIDEN. I should note for the record, that the absence of other people here is not for lack of interest. There is a full blown hearing going on which was scheduled for 9 a.m. this morning, and for a lot of scheduling reasons had to be changed to 2 p.m. But there is keen interest in this subject.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Senator, we are glad to have you here.
Mr. LEHMAN. Hopefully, this will be a first-class discussion.
Mr. Chairman, we appreciate this opportunity to discuss with you the treaty on conventional armed forces in Europe and to bring you up to date on recent developments.
As you know, an interagency team was in Moscow last week with Secretary Baker to review fully with our Soviet counterparts the very serious, outstanding issues that have prevented us from sending the CFE Treaty forward for advice and consent to ratification.
Let me begin by stating the basic position of the Bush administration on the CFE Treaty. This treaty is very much in the interests of the United States, Canada, and all of Europe. Indeed, the CFE Treaty is an important step in our quest for greater global security.
Our objectives of establishing a secure and stable balance of conventional forces in Europe at lower levels, eliminating disparities prejudicial to stability and security, and eliminating capabilities for launching a surprise attack or a large scale offensive action will be met.
The negotiation has also played an important role in facilitating positive political developments in Europe. Thus, the administration believes that once the Soviet Union takes appropriate remedial action, the CFE Treaty should be ratified and implemented.
When the CFE Treaty enters into force, it will constitute a prominent feature of the European security landscape, one that makes a vital contribution to stability in Europe and to a security regime based on cooperation rather than confrontation.
It will also allow help us to verify, through onsite presence, the destruction of thousands of pieces of military hardware, and it will provide an underlying basis of stability, certainty, and confidence in an era of rapid change.
We believe that the Congress shares this assessment of the treaty, and we appreciate
in particular the strong support of the CFE Treaty by members of this subcommittee.
We agree that the treaty on conventional armed forces in Europe will make a positive contribution to European security. I am certain we also agree however that all states who sign the treaty must comply with its provisions.
I know you are well aware of the problems that we have in this regard with the Soviet Union but let me summarize them briefly. First, the Soviet Union claims that equipment held by units such as naval infantry, and coastal defense forces as well as conventional equipment subordinate to the strategic rocket forces and to civil defense forces is excluded from treaty limits.
This claim, which is rejected by all other CFE signatories contradicts the language of the treaty and has no basis in the negotiating record. The treaty is unambiguous in this respect.
Unless it meets one of the clearly specified exceptions set forth in the treaty, all land-based equipment in the treaty limited categories counts against treaty ceilings regardless of service subordination.
Second, the Soviet data submitted at treaty signature contained inaccuracies with respect to equipment actually in the zone on the date of treaty signature. We recently received some corrections to the Soviet data which we are currently analyzing.
Third, Soviet pre-treaty withdrawal of equipment from the area of application is not a violation of CFE, although it raises concerns about the Soviet Union acting in the spirit of the negotiations.
Over the past 6 months we have sought from the Soviet Union a full accounting of equipment moved east of the Urals as well as assurances as to the ultimate disposition of this equipment.
We took these issues seriously. The administration will not forward the CFE Treaty to the Senate for its advice and consent to ratification until the Soviet Union fulfills its treaty obligations.
Shortly after signature of the CFE Treaty, the 22 nations participating in CFE resumed negotiations, the so-called CFE 1A talks. Until the concerns that we have raised with the Soviet Union are satisfied however, we and our NATO allies agree that we will not continue follow-on negotiations on manpower limitations as if nothing has happened.
There will be no business as usual. Let me be clear, CFE 1A is in session. No one has walked away from these follow-on talks. Our delegation remains in Vienna, ready to push ahead whenever the Soviet Union makes that possible by resolving our current concerns.
The final plenary of this round, is scheduled for tomorrow, March 21, at which time we will once again explain to the Soviet representatives our position on the issues, and ask for satisfactory responses.
I In the absence of such responses, there will be no substantive negotiations, no working group sessions or any other negotiations on follow-on issues until our current concerns are resolved.
We have also made clear to the Soviet Union in the joint consultative group, the forum created by the CFE Treaty for dealing with treaty-related problems, that its actions with regard to article III of the treaty are unacceptable.
The joint consultative group has been in session since January 21. The originally proposed date for ending the session was extended in an attempt to resolve the outstanding questions. During this time, no other signatory to the treaty has supported the Soviet Union's argument on article III.
We have also used the joint consultative group to raise specific questions with Soviet representatives relating to our other concerns about the data they have submitted as part of the information exchange mandated by the treaty.
All of the other participants share our concerns. Many have also communicated their concerns directly to Moscow, some at the very highest levels of government. less than 1 week ago we reiterated this message to the Soviet leadership in Moscow.
Secretary Baker forcefully urged the Soviet Union to act to resolve the outstanding problems. The ball is squarely in the Soviet Union's court. It is time for the Soviet Union to act so that the ratification and implementation process can go forward.
I conclude, Mr. Chairman, where I began, the treaty on conventional forces in Europe represents a solid foundation on which to build a more stable, more cooperative European security structure.
The administration wants to implement the treaty as soon as possible, and we want to build on the treaty with additional agreements to further strengthen security and stability.
We will achieve the outcome we all desire only by remaining firm in dealing with the Soviet Union, and that will be possible only if we remain together in the alliance and here at home.
Congressional support for our position is very important. We appreciate the support we have already received from you and your colleagues. By staying together we will send Moscow a clear message: The Soviet Union must act responsibly and in full compliance with its obligations. When it does, we can move forward. Thank you.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Mr. Chairman, I have a prepared statement, but
perhaps you will just let me make a few remarks.
Senator BIDEN. Sure, anyway you want to proceed. None of my colleagues are present so I do not have to yield to anyone.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. I am delighted to appear before you, I always am, but particularly on this subject. We know of your strong interest and the subcommittee's strong interest and support on this. It has been important in the past. It is going to be quite important as we move forward from here.
I think that as I reflect on what you said at the outset, about the reasons why this is an important agreement, you covered much of what I might have said in fact, in an introductory statement.
So in a sense, I consider this hearing today a conversation among practitioners of the same art, with strong shared interests in an important arrangement for the United States.
I would simply say to you that I, for my part, would be interested in working
with you. We all would be in any way we can, from here forward as we have in
[The prepared statement of Mr. BARTHOLOMEW follows:]
Above and beyond these concrete benefits, the
CFE Treaty will serve as the essential foundation for the post-Cold-War security
architecture in Europe. It will create a stable European military constellation,
in which no country has the incentive or the immediate wherewithal to commit
large-scale aggression. Only with this foundation in place can we move from
a European security order based on confrontation to one based on cooperation.
But we cannot reap these multiple political and military benefits of the Treaty unless it is fully and faithfully implemented " signed by the 22 Heads of State and Government in Paris. A Treaty only partially observed could not provide a secure or trustworthy basis for the development of a new security architecture for Europe. The Soviet Union, by its own actions, has raised a serious obstacle to the ratification and entry into force of this Treaty; and it is up to the Soviet Union to remove this obstacle.
As you are aware, the data the Soviet Union submitted at Treaty signature contained inaccuracies. We have raised this problem with the Soviet Union and these inaccuracies have subsequently been partially corrected. In addition, beginning in mid-1989 and continuing up to Treaty signature, the Soviets withdrew massive amounts of equipment from the Treaty aria of application to locations east of the Urals. Withdrawal is not a violation of the Treaty, although it raises concerns about the Soviets acting in the spirit of the negotiations. These withdrawals have diminished significantly the amount of equipment the Soviets would otherwise have had to destroy. We are continuing to pursue these two issues with the Soviets to rind solutions that satisfy our concerns.
By far the most important of the problems that the Soviet Union has created is its claim that equipment held by naval infantry, coastal defense and strategic rocket forces is excluded from Treaty limits. This claim, which is rejected by all 21 other CFE signatories, flatly contradicts the language of the Treaty and has no basis in the negotiating record. Article III of the Treaty is unambiguous: with a few clearly-specified exceptions, all land-based equipment counts against Treaty ceilings, regardless of service subordination.
This is in the first instance an issue of principle-obligations entered into in good faith must be honored and cannot be unilaterally rewritten after Treaty signature. Moreover, if uncorrected the Soviet position would undermine the Treaty in that it would permit land-based equipment to be built up without any constraints simply by assigning equipment to naval infantry and coastal defense units.
We have repeatedly made clear to Soviet officials, at very high levels, that obligations which we all assumed when signing the Treaty must be met. At the same time, the Administration has decided that it will not transmit the Treaty to the Senate for its advice and consent to ratification until the Soviet Union fulfills its Treaty obligations, particularly under Article 111. This approach, we strongly believe, is best designed to secure fulfillment by the Soviet Union of its obligations, and thus to open the way to ratification and entry into force of the Treaty. And we believe this approach will succeed.
The enormous potential benefits of the CFE Treaty are reason enough to insist that the Soviet Union fully meet its Treaty obligations. But the issue is at the same time a broader one. What is at stake is not simply the integrity of the CFE Treaty but also the international credibility of the Soviet Union in this new era. The dispute over the CFE Treaty is a litmus test of Soviet readiness to be a constructive and reliable partner in building a stable and cooperative post-Cold-War order in Europe.
There is an internal debate in progress in the Soviet Union over the wisdom of the foreign policy of greater openness and cooperation that Moscow has pursued in recent years. Opponents of this policy wish to walk back some of the progress that East and West have made together. If the West ends up yielding on CFE, we would be encouraging those in the Soviet Union who counsel intransigence and inviting further trouble down the road-on CFE and on other agreements. The effect would be to undermine the web of recent East-West agreements and the confidence they have engendered.
The Administration remains committed to the successful ratification and full implementation of the Treaty. We will move forward expeditiously on ratification as soon as the Soviet Union was fulfilled the obligations it assumed in signing the CFE Treaty last November 19. We look forward to working closely with you as we move forward with this process.
Senator BIDEN. Explain that to me.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. In the vernacular of the trade, somebody screwed up. There is also an element of that in it too.
Mr. LEHMAN. Somebody thought they would get us to pay twice. They thought they could blow it by us---
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Blow it by us, we are all very interested in getting this done.
Senator BIDEN. YOU mean they are committed then? They are stuck on that position, once having taken it?
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Mr. Chairman, we have given you a range of possible explanations. I emphasize, I, for one, ain't going to rank order them or attach a factor of validity.
Senator BIDEN. I understand that, but I have great faith in your instincts.
I know you are familiar with the condition proposition that I suggested. Based on the letter that I received from the Secretary, God bless him, I do not think he is familiar with what I-I apparently did not articulate it very well.
Because-unless you drafted the letter, Reggie. [Laughter.]
Mr. LEHMAN. Our State Department representative will answer that.
Senator BIDEN. That is what I said. I am looking at him.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. I want the record to show that that is not the case, sir.
Senator BIDEN. In the paragraph on this notion of condition, he says, we believe it would be a mistake to signal to the Soviet military that their behavior will produce any positive results. Such mistaken encouragement would only make it harder for the Soviet leadership to insist upon compliance with negotiated agreements as eventually they must do.
Well, obviously, that is the exact opposite purpose I had in mind. And again, I am not sure I am right about this. I am not going to bet the farm on this one.
And so again, let me just ask you on record here to tell me why the rationale does not make sense. The rationale being that if the Senate were to consent, were to vote for a treaty with a clear understanding that article III was interpreted as all 22 nations understand it to be, differently than how the Soviets interpret it, that would then equip the President and the Secretary with a document that was signed and sealed and only needed to be delivered, and would require Soviets at that point to either ante up or out. Maybe that is too much of a gamble, I do not know. Is the concern that you will get it up here and there will be a lot of loose cannons rolling around this deck preventing it from being ratified that way?
I mean, tell me why that is not a good idea?
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. First of all, Senator, I want to start off by saying that we really do respect and appreciate the point and purpose that you are talking about.
You are talking about how to get a job done which is to get to a treaty that we can ratify and get around the article III problem. Our view of this and it governs the view of the device, the tactical device which is, as you said yourself, Mr. Chairman, unorthodox.
You qualified it as saying, somewhat orthodox. I would have said just left
it as unorthodox.
But look, our view of the situation is the one we see this device. The first point is this, the administration has taken the decision that it does not yet have an international agreement on which it wishes to seek the advice and consent of the Senate. Our point is, we do not come to seek the Senate's advice and consent until we think we have made a decision, that we have an arrangement that we wish to present. This is the executive branch's responsibility.
I would hasten to add, I am no constitutional lawyer, but I think historically, when the executive branch has presented a treaty to the Senate, it is saying, I wish to ratify this treaty and I seek your advice and consent to do so.
Well, we are not ready, very simply, in terms of the problem that we have before us and that we have been discussing here, we are not ready to ask you for that advice and consent. This is the main question that I think is our starting point on this.
The second point that I think is in our mind is that we appreciate the notion of its contributing to the weight, the momentum that we are trying to generate to bring the Soviets to resolve this question, but we think we have a lot, the message is very clear. We think the message is not only very clear from us, it is very clear from allied governments, and it is very clear, frankly, Mr. Chairman, from the members of the Senate such as yourself.
You began in some of your opening remarks by saying that there is a pretty strong wind of opinion that is quite clearly expressed.
Senator BIDEN. I think it is uniform.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Uniform on this question. So, there is no hidden agenda here.
Senator BIDEN. I was not assuming you thought that. First of all, anything that is new is always-I mean, the State Department is the last body to look at that, except for you, I know that.
So it is a little bit like new ideas in the Democratic Party, you know. But I think what is going to happen, since this debate is taking place between you, between everyone and the Soviet Union, assuming the Soviets change their position tomorrow, back to the interpretation of article III that we accept, I predict to you that what you will find is not necessarily me, but one or another of my colleagues on this committee, sitting to my right here, likely to attach such a condition anyway because they are going to raise issues as to whether or not you really-did he cave in? Did he not cave in?
We want to make sure this is straight. So my view is, you are going to end up with the condition anyway. And second, that this is a complicated process because we are talking about a couple of dozen nations in terms of this negotiation.
And it is not a bilateral negotiation. For example, what if everyone but Bulgaria agreed to this interpretation? I suspect you would submit the treaty anyway. I may be mistaken.
Go ahead, you are smiling. Do you understand the point I am trying to make?
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. I do.
Senator BIDEN. So that is the reason. That is what has moved me on this: you
are going to get a condition anyway. I understand that the condition coming
after you conclude that treaty is, as you want it, different than a condition
coming before. I understand that.
What would happen if it were everybody but Bulgaria?
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. Let me say, I will let Ron answer that question. [Laughter.]
Let me answer the first part of the question, Senator. Simply put, we are confident that when we are satisfied and bring this treaty to you for advice and consent, you will be satisfied. And that if there are such proposals, we will be in a position to explain to you-
Senator BIDEN. I am confident I will be satisfied. I do not think you will have a problem with me.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. I understand what you are saying. Senator BIDEN. You may have a problem with the fellow who sits in this seat, this very seat, and, let me make it clear, I happen to be sitting in Claiborne Pell's seat right now.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. But if I may, Mr. Chairman, I am not sure- I would judge that you would be a better predictor than I about the actions of your colleagues, sir, I say that.
But that said, look we are on the same wavelength. I do not detect a difference between the sides of the House, the Senate on the importance of this. I do not see any real differences where the administration's view on it is concerned in terms of it seriousness of its intent.
So if we solve the problem, I think we will have done it in a way that will be regarded--
Senator BIDEN. No sense in beating this to death. I want to be helpful on this process. The reason, by way of brief explanation is, there is still a decided minority, relatively small minority that finds arms control agreements anathema to peace and security, period.
So notwithstanding the fact they agree with you that the Soviets are out of sync on article III, they do not think there should be an article III. They do not think there should be anything.
I mean, their rationale is, you cannot trust those Soviet commies, you know, and therefore, I am not going to sign on any agreement and they are going to make it difficult whatever the agreement may be. As a matter of fact, they are going to try to undo existing agreements.
And let me go to, rather than to continue on this issue, which is even beginning to bore me, the ABM Treaty, if I may.
Am I correct in stating that the Soviets would regard any violation of the ABM Treaty and/or an outright abrogation of the treaty as impacting upon our relationship in a significant way?
I mean, how significant do the Soviets view the ABM treaty? Flat out, as you know up here, some of my colleagues are moving to withdraw the United States from the ABM Treaty. What kind of impact would that have?
Mr. LEHMAN. Mr. Chairman, Soviet attitudes toward strategic defenses, defense against ballistic missiles have altered a bit over time. But clearly, we have gone through a period over the last 10 to 20 years, in which the ABM Treaty has been a centerpiece of the Soviet presentation of their approach to strategic forces. They have. insisted on keeping the ABM Treaty in effect. Their attitudes with respect to certain aspects of the ABM Treaty have not always been the same as ours. On the one hand, you have the example of the Krasnoyarsk radar where in the end they discovered they had made a mistake.
And on the other hand, you have issues with respect to interpretations of certain provisions of the ABM Treaty where we have differences today.
Obviously, they are the only nation in the world that has the permitted systems, 100 interceptors around Moscow, so they do have an interest in strategic defenses, but they have kept that number within the ABM Treaty.
We have had a number of issues with them having to do with the possibility of movable radars. We have gotten those issues largely resolved.
We continue in the SCC to discuss issues having to do with certain Soviet practices. We have made progress on some of those. Some of those remain open.
But, clearly, in the mid-1980's there was an attempt by the Soviet Union to hold progress in the START negotiations hostage to a tightening up of the ABM Treaty. They have drowned that linkage, but clearly, they have made it their position that they expect that we should be in compliance with the ABM Treaty. They certainly have the same rights we have under the ABM Treaty with respect to certain rights having to do with supreme national interest. But we have heard voices within the Soviet Union that have talked about the possibility of perhaps employing defenses that go beyond what is permitted by the ABM Treaty. Our approach has been to say to the Soviet Union in the defense and space negotiations that we think strategic defenses offer the possibility of a better, safer world, that we are exploring the feasibility of those defenses, and that if we proceed with those defenses, we think the best way would be a cooperative transition. We proposed certain confidence-building measures. We have had them visit, for example, some of our strategic defense initiative sites and projects. So, I would say that the ABM Treaty remains a centerpiece of their security policy. But there have been changed attitudes in both directions over time.
Senator BIDEN. Do we continue to view it in our security interest for it to exist, the ABM Treaty?
Mr. LEHMAN. We have not proposed abrogating the ABM Treaty. Senator BIDEN. To put it another way, does President Bush support withdrawal from the ABM Treaty?
Mr. LEHMAN. We have said that we want to explore the feasibility of advanced defenses that could enhance our security, and that once we have done that, we would like to proceed. That may involve having to go beyond the ABM Treaty and that is why we have engaged in a negotiation with the Soviet Union on how we could do that in a cooperative manner.
Senator BIDEN. Does the administration view as helpful or harmfuI the Senate initiative to withdraw us from the ABM Treaty now?
Mr. HADLEY. I am not sure of that, Senator, I am trying to think of the text
of the letter that General Scowcroft sent over in connection with Senator Warner's,
sense of the Congress resolution, and I, unfortunately do not have that here
with me, but I think he at that point set out the position of the administration
I guess what I would say is two things that may be new in this sort thing. One, as Ron mentioned, the Soviets did fall off an explicit linking between going forward on the START agreement and resolution of issues under the ABM Treaty. They did that in Wyoming and they have largely stuck to that.
Two, there was a resolution. A joint statement was issued by the President and President Gorbachev in I think July of last year which set out objectives for START II and follow-on negotiations, both in the START context and nuclear and space talks.
And one of the things that said was talked about an appropriate balance between defenses and offensive systems, in the interest of strategic stability.
And third, this GPALS Program which has one of those awful Defense Department anachronisms associated with it, it is nonetheless an effort to craft a program that does deal with a particular concern, national security threat, that was demonstrated fairly graphically in the Persian Gulf exercise, but is one which hopefully we think the Soviets ought to be similarly concerned about, and is a concept which may be a way toward allowing the Soviet Union and the United States to do what the two Presidents talked about; namely, implementing a stable relationship that has some roll for defenses in it.
Senator BIDEN. It sounds to me like what you are suggesting is that at a minimum, whatever transformation may occur in the ABM Treaty, you and the administration are contemplating that it would have to be negotiated. Are you or are you not?
Is the administration going to be up here when and if our colleagues are on the floor suggesting we withdraw from the ABM Treaty, saying, no, do not do that. It is not a good time for us to do this.
Mr. HADLEY. I think certainly there is agreement that that is obviously the best way to approach this issue, and I think as I recall the text of Senator Warner's resolution, it talked very much in those terms, in terms of encouraging negotiation with the Soviets, of something that would permit a pursuit of defenses.
Senator BIDEN. It has been called to my attention that Scowcroft said that you all would decide in 2 years whether the ABM Treaty serves U.S. security interests.
My question is today, is that correct?
Mr. HADLEY. That is what Senator Warner's resolution says.
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. That is what the resolution says. Mr. HADLEY. That was the text.
Senator BIDEN. I am going to have to either learn to read better or he is going to have to learn to write better. [Laughter.) Anyway, why do you not ask the question? Seriously, why do you not ask the question?
Mr. RUBIN. The administration supported the Warner resolution or the basis of deciding 2 years from now whether the President believed U.S. interests were served by the ABM Treaty.
The question is whether today the administration believes we should withdraw
from the ABM Treaty or keep it?
Yes or no?
Senator BIDEN. No maybe.
Mr. HADLEY. I am not aware of any statement that the administration has made saying we want to withdraw from the ABM Treaty today.
I am not aware of anything.
Senator BIDEN. I am not either. The point I am trying to get at is, I want you all to say right now, today, it is a good idea. It serves our security interests, because if you do not, I am worried you are going to give grist to the mill that I do not think you want at this moment, while you are trying to nail down a CFE agreement, and while you are trying to nail down a START agreement.
Mr. HADLEY. I think you have it right, and we have not said we are going to abrogate that treaty. But we have said and what we have proposed in the defense in space talks is to try and get the Soviets to agree to a cooperative transition, to put great reliance on defenses, to introduce defenses to, for example, relax some of the provisions dealing with sensors which we think would be useful to have.
So we have talked in the context of trying to get the Soviets to agree on a modification to that structure that we believe serves both of our interests and that is what the position has been in the defense in space talks, and I think that is really what is reflected in General Scowcroft's letter with respect to that.
Senator BIDEN. One more question about article III and then I want you to tell me a little bit, if you are able to, about what progress, if any, was made in Moscow?
We talked about possible rationales for the Soviets taking the position they took. One we did not mention is the Soviets are not at all happy that naval forces were not included, now having given up a significant advantage that they had, assuming the treaty is ratified, but already by their own unilateral action, having given up the significant advantage they had in terms of army forces, and ground forces. They now find themselves increasingly disturbed by the disparity of numbers and quality of naval forces, and therefore, are really just trying to figure out how to get the navy in the game.
And if in fact we would, notwithstanding the fact that we do not have to, but if we were willing to begin to deal with the issue of the navy, we may find the concern on article III collapsing rapidly, and maybe they would in fact be back on board.
If the United States expressed a willingness to talk about naval arms control, do you think-and I am not suggesting we should. I am just trying to get a sense. Do you think the article III issue might fade away rapidly in terms of the Soviets?
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. With great respect, Mr. Chairman, the question is posed in a manner that says, you know, if you jumped off a building-I do not suggest you do so-do you think you would survive, in the sense that it begs the prior question, which is our interest or lack of it as a country, I think just the lack of it, in naval arms control.
Senator BIDEN. Well, I see how you could read it that way, Reggie, but the fact of the matter is, the rationale for the Soviets recalcitrance at this point goes well beyond arms control issues. If the rationale relates to the fact that Gorbachev no longer has the whole card, that Gorbachev is now controlled by the military, that the military has taken a radically different view than it had for the past 3 years, it affects a whole range of things well beyond arms control.
If it only relates to an arms control dispute, then that sheds a little bit of a different light on what the state of affairs is and our ability to deal with and operate in this new environment with the Soviet Union. So, that is the purpose of my question, and the only way I know how to get at, that is to suggest that if we were tomorrow to turn around and say, OK, navy's in the game, would we have a resolution of article III?
I am just trying to read what is moving them. Do you think that would happen? Not should we, but what would happen? It is a little bit different than jumping out of the building, and will you survive? It is sort of jumping out the building-were you pushed, or did you jump out? Is your wife kicking you out? Did the lover push you out the window, or did the military walk in and kick you out the window?
Mr. BARTHOLOMEW. I would much rather answer those questions than the ones you asked, Mr. Chairman. [Laughter.]
Mr. LEHMAN. Mr. Chairman, the mandate is clear. We negotiated the mandate. That has been settled. It was also clear that these tanks are not ships, they are not aircraft carriers, they are not naval forces, as meant by the mandate, that is clear as well. I will tell you, speaking for. myself, that I think it would be a very dangerous negotiating precedent to reopen these issues in this kind of environment and pay these kinds of prices, because you will simply feed this behavior and encourage them to demand more, so I think it would be not only wrong for us to do that, but it would only feed demands for more. I think we have to understand that when the deal is done, the deal is done.
Senator BIDEN. I think that is fair enough. Let me turn to the staff of Senators who are not here to see if there is anything they would like me to pursue. Is there anything else?
I do not mean to be so humorous about this. I think the work you are doing is incredibly important.
Now, let me just conclude by asking the last thing I will ask you. Tell me what happened in Moscow, if you can, and then I will let you go.
Mr. LEHMAN. Mr. Chairman, as you know, this is an ongoing negotiation so in open session let me simply say that I think our strategy is working. I think the Soviet Union is getting the message. They are isolated. Their logic does not hold up. No one agrees with them. I think they are testing to see whether or not we are willing to sacrifice the principle and therefore they have raised ideas but they do not do the job. Let me stop there in open session and invite my colleagues to comment.
Senator BIDEN. Any of you want to violate anything in open session? All right.
I really appreciate you coming Lip. I may ask you-and it will not even be necessary to have a hearing to do it, but I may ask you in the next couple of weeks if maybe I can come down and you can fill me in a little bit about what you cannot tell me now.
I truly appreciate your making the effort to come up, and I thank you all, and if there are no further comments on anyone's part, we are adjourned.
[Whereupon, at 4:23 p.m., the committee adjourned, to reconvene at 10:05 a.m., July 11, 1991.]
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