Dorgan (And Others) Amendment No. 5045
(Senate - July 25, 1996)

(Purpose: To provide congressional review of and clear standards for the eligibility of foreign governments to be cosidered for United States military assistance and arms transfers)

Mr. DORGAN (for himself, Mr. Hatfield, Mr. Bumpers, Mr. Jeffords, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Harkin, Mr. Pryor, Ms. Moseley-Braun, Mr. Feingold, Mr. Pell, Mr. Inouye, Mr. Wyden, Mr. Kennedy, Mr. Simon, Mr. Lautenberg, and Mrs. Feinstein) proposed an amendment to t he bill, H.R. 3540, supra; as follows:
At the appropriate place in the bill, insert the following new title:


This title may be cited as the `Congressional Review of Arms Transfers Eligibility Act of 1996'.

The purpose of this title is to provide congressional review of the eligibility of foreign governments to be considered for United States military assistance and arms transfers, and to establish clear standards for such eligibility including adherenc e to democratic principles, protection of human rights, nonaggression, and participation in the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms.

(a) Prohibition; Waiver: United States military assistance or arms transfers may not be provided to a foreign government during a fiscal year unless the President determines and certifies to the Congress for that fiscal year that--

(1) such government meets the criteria contained in section 04;

(2) it is in the national security interest of the United States to provide military assistance and arms transfers to such government, and the Congress enacts a law approving such determination; or

(3) an emergency exists under which it is vital to the interest of the United States to provide military assistance or arms transfers to such government.
(b) Determination With Respect to Emergency Situations: The President shall submit to the Congress at the earliest possible date reports containing determinations with respect to emergencies under subsection (a)(3). Each such report shall contain a description of--

(1) the nature of the emergency;

(2) the type of military assistance and arms transfers provided to the foreign government; and

(3) the cost to the United States of such assistance and arms transfers.

The criteria referred to in section 03(a)(1) are as follows:

(1) Promotes democracy: Such government--

(A) was chosen by and permits free and fair elections;

(B) promotes civilian control of the military and security forces and has civilian institutions controlling the policy, operation, and spending of all law enforcement and security institutions, as well as the armed forces;

(C) promotes the rule of law, equality before the law, and respect for individual and minority
rights, including freedom to speak, publish, associate, and organize; and

(D) promotes the strengthening of political, legislative, and civil institutions of democracy, as well as autonomous institutions to monitor the conduct of public officials and to combat corruption.

(2) Respects human rights: Such government--

(A) does not engage in gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, as described in section 502B(d)(1) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961;

(B) vigorously investigates, disciplines, and prosecutes those responsible for gross violations of internationally recognized human rights;

(C) permits access on a regular basis to political prisoners by international humanitarian organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross;

(D) promotes the independence of the judiciary and other official bodies that oversee the protection of human rights; and

(E) does not impede the free functioning of and access of domestic and international human rights organizations or, in situations of conflict or famine, of humanitarian organizations.

(3) Not engaged in certain acts of armed aggression: Such government is not currently engaged in acts of armed aggression in violation of international law.

(4) Full participation in united nations register of conventional arms: Such government is fully participating in the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms.

(a) Notification to Congress: In the case of a determination by the President under section 03(a)(1) or (2) with respect to a foreign government, the President shall submit to the Congress the initial certification in conjunction wi th the submission of the annual request for enactment of authorizations and appropriations for foreign assistance programs for a fiscal year and shall, where appropriate, submit additional or amended certifications at any time thereafter in the fiscal yea r.
(b) Decertification: If a foreign government ceases to meet the criteria contained in section 04, the President shall submit a decertification of the government to the Congress, whereupon any prior certification under section 03(a) (1) shall cease to be effective.

For purposes of this title, the terms `United States military assistance' and `arms transfers' mean--

(1) assistance under chapter 2 of part II of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (relating to military assistance), including the transfer of excess defense articles under section 516 of that Act;

(2) assistance under chapter 5 of part II of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (relating to international military education and training);

(3) the transfer of defense articles, defense services, or design and construction services under the Arms Export Control Act (except any transfer or other assistance under section 23 of such Act), including defense articles and defense services licen sed or approved for export under section 38 of that Act.


(a) Except as provided in subsection (b), this title shall take effect October 1, 1997.

(b) Any initial certification made under section 03 shall be transmitted to the Congress with the President's budget submission for fiscal year 1998 under section 1105 of title 31, United States Code.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, 12 years ago in August, on an almost perfect, beautiful summer morning, I was in the jungle and mountains between Nicaragua and Honduras and with two other Members of Congress visiting, as the first officials to do so, a cont ra camp. I will never forget the morning that we walked through this jungle. We had traveled 3 1/2 hours by car, then back up in riverbeds, and finally walked. And I walked into a jungle clearing somewhere between Nicaragua and Honduras.

As I began to see a group of people in that clearing, I saw a very young boy wearing a blue uniform. I found out later that it was a military uniform purchased from Sears. Yes, our Sears. All of those soldiers were outfitted in uniforms from Sears. But it was not so much his uniform that captured my attention. It was seeing a young boy who appeared to be 10 or 11 years old carrying a machine gun. It turns out that the machine gun was in that young boy's hands courtesy of the United States as well.

Well, that conflict and that set of military arms transfers led to a long debate. We debated for years about whether we should or should not have sent arms to the contras. But it got me interested. I wondered, to whom are we sending arms around the wor ld? What kind of arms are we sending? Who gets America's jet fighter planes? Who acquires American-made tanks? Who acquires American guns and cluster bombs? And I discovered that the United States of America is the largest arms merchant in the world.

In 1994, we delivered over $10 billion of the $20 billion worth of arms spread all over this world, arms used for defense and for killing, in some cases arms provided to both sides of the same conflict by American arms merchants and by our Government.

Fifty two percent of the worldwide arms deliveries were from the United States of America. We offer today an amendment called the code of conduct amendment, a commonsense approach to address the issue of the arms trade.

It is interesting and tragic, I think, that selling arms to some parts of the world comes back to haunt us. American troops in Panama, Iraq, Somalia, and Haiti lost their lives facing weapons made in this country or weapons from technology this country furnished others. Someone made a profit selling arms to someone that should not have received the arms and American uniformed men and women then faced those same weapons in a conflict.

U.S. arms are often turned against innocent civilians. The United States has offered F-16 fighters to Indonesia's military regime despite the fact that U.S. weapons have already been used in the occupation of East Timor. Two hundred thousand civilians have been slaughtered there.

The definition in the dictionary of the word `boomerang' is `an act that backfires on its originator.' That is what we find with some--not all, some--of the foreign military arms sales, a boomerang, an arms trade policy that ends up killing American so ldiers, violating human rights, and giving away American jobs.

We do not come to the floor of the Senate suggesting that we not furnish arms anywhere in the world. Allies of ours that need arms to defend themselves should receive those arms. Democracies around the world that need arms to feel safe and secure shoul d receive those arms. The question we ask is, should there not be some minimum standard of conduct that measures whether and when we send those arms?

We propose a commonsense approach in this legislation. And I should add that this kind of legislation is being considered by our allies in Europe and other places in the world, and we hope we will have a safer world if others and ourselves will adopt t his kind of code of conduct with respect to arms transfers. Our commonsense approach is this.

First, to be eligible to receive American-made arms, we would expect a government must be promoting democracy through fair and free elections, civilian control of the military, rule of law, freedom of speech and of the press.

Second, we would expect a country receiving our arms to respect human rights. We would expect them not to commit gross violations of internationally recognized human rights.

Third, we would expect that a country receiving our arms would observe international borders and not be engaged in armed aggression against its neighbors in violation of international law.

Fourth, we would expect countries receiving our armaments to participate in the U.N. Conventional Arms Registry, which provides transparency to the world arms market by listing major arms sales and transfers.

We provide that a President may waive the criteria on an emergency basis. I conceive that there are circumstances in which that might well be necessary. We would provide for that waiver. We do not include arms export credit arrangements under Section 2 3 of the Arms Export Control Act, such as the Foreign Military Financing program.

What we are trying to do is think through the question, is there not some basic standard by which we judge whether an arms transfer to some other part of the world makes sense? Is it only profits? Do we only care that someone can make some additional p rofits by taking an incredibly sophisticated weapons machine, a jet fighter, for example, and selling it anywhere in the world? Is it only profit or is there some other measure that is important? Senator Hatfield and I and many others bel ieve there ought to be some measure, and it is called the code of conduct.

It is interesting that the boomerang I mentioned is not just

having American-made weapons turned on American soldiers. It is also moving American jobs elsewhere. Lockheed Martin secured a sale of F-16's to Turkey in exchange for the planes being built in Turkey. What that means, of course, is, to the extent that sale would have made sense in the first place and met the criteria, someone else has the economic advantage of that sale.

But our major concern is not jobs. Our major concern is to promote and create a safer world, and it is not a safer world when we send American soldiers to deal with trouble in the world and they find themselves facing the barrel of an American-made wea pon provided to a government that should not have received it in the first instance, provided without any review, without any standard code that we develop that says, `Here are the conditions under which we will transfer these arms shipments.'

Those who would oppose this might say we are trying to shut off arms sales. That is simply not the case. There will remain arms sales. Arms manufacturers in this country produce a sophisticated product, in most cases the best in the world. Other countr ies often want those products for their common defense. We understand and accept that there will be arms transfers, but we believe it is time for this country to adopt a code, a standard, by which we judge whether an arms transfer to this dictator or that dictator or this country or that country makes sense for this country's long-term well-being. The fact is that weapons have been sold in circumstances where the sale has not been in the best interests of United States, and that is why we offer this legis lation.

Let me, Mr. President, reserve the remainder of the time, since I see that my distinguished colleague Senator Hatfield is on the floor. Let me say, before he begins, that Senator Hatfield has been at this longer than o thers of us in the Senate. I deeply admire the work he has done in the Senate and for this country, and I feel deeply honored to participate with him in offering this amendment.

[Page: S8783]

Mr. HATFIELD addressed the Chair.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Oregon is recognized.

Mr. HATFIELD. Mr. President, I ask for 8 minutes.

Mr. DORGAN. I yield the Senator 8 minutes.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Oregon is recognized for 8 minutes.

Mr. HATFIELD. Mr. President, I think it is very obvious I have a problem of laryngitis.

I thank my good friend, Senator Dorgan, for taking leadership on this particular amendment. I feel strongly enough about it to be here to do two things; one, to support the amendment, but the other is to apologize to the chairman of th e Subcommittee on Appropriations, Mr. McConnell, for offering a rider to an appropriations bill, which I ask everybody to refrain from doing. So I guess there is no virtue of consistency in this particular environment we work in.

Let me associate myself with the eloquent statement made by Senator Dorgan to explain this bill. I would only try to add perhaps one or two perspectives.

First of all, I think we have to recognize that we are not locking the President out of an action that he might have to take if he has a problem in an emergency situation. In other words, the President would have the power to make a waiver, a waiver of the criteria we have set up in this amendment in case he feels that our national interest is at stake and to make a waiver that is in the interest of our national need and our national security. So it is flexible in that sense.

Let me pick up on Senator Dorgan's examples of how this expands the vulnerability of our own troops when they are sent abroad for peacekeeping activities after we have delivered arms. Let me take a specific. From 1981 to 1991, $154 mil lion of arms were delivered to Somalia from the United States. Then when you begin to look at how that stimulated the arms race and endangered our national security, ultimately the total cost of arms to Somalia was $1.2 billion--25,800 United States troop s were deployed, 23 were killed in action, 143 were wounded.

That is the kind of return we had on that one example, of sending troops.

Also, today we are building more F-16's in Ankara, Turkey, than we are in Fort Worth, TX. It does not help American workers, as some may say, and we, indeed, need to help employment in this country. We find that 88,000 jobs could be created in the Unit ed States in offsetting some of this extraordinary subsidy of arms. In other words, we do not lose jobs by cutting down the export of arms. We are creating them in other sectors of our economy, where there is great need.

Mr. President, I was reared in a generation where among our required reading in high school was a book called `Merchants of Death.' It was a story of how the Krupp Works and other manufacturers of arms in Central Europe sent their arms out to both side s. In fact, they were sometimes guilty of stimulating conflict in order to sell their arms.

We were reared in a manner of saying that is immoral; surely our Nation would never be guilty of such a crime against humanity. Yet I have to say, since the Soviet Union has become unraveled, we are now unquestionably the No. 1 merchants of death in th is world by our export of arms. We not only export them as a market, we go around promoting it. We go around ballyhooing the arms that we have, the arms that are exhibited in the Paris Air Show and many international conferences that supposedly are for so me international benefit. It is an arms peddling activity. We even let our Embassies be instructed to facilitate arms transfers as part of their duty in the country in which they are representing the United States. I cannot understand how people around th is country will tolerate much further this kind of export that we have engaged in.

It started with, perhaps, Charles de Gaulle. That is the way he funded his military budget, was to sell arms abroad. Unfortunately, back in 1962, that was the policy of the United States of America. That became the policy in 1962, when the President de cided in order to help fund some of our own military budgets, we would export arms. This idea of funding a domestic need by exporting our arms is, to me, immoral and is counterproductive.

So I am very hopeful we will support this particular amendment. It is flexible. It takes into consideration emergencies unforeseen. And it does not lock the President out. In fact, all it does is to say the Congress has some joint responsibility in tha t kind of policy that was recommended by the President's review commission on arms, that the Congress should have some kind of role in assessing this from time to time.

We have not had a debate on this floor for 20 years on this subject, a comprehensive debate. I am not sure in 1 hour we are going to have it today. But at least it is a small step, I think, in raising this issue so the American public will understand o ur failure to uphold our responsibilities in governing some of this export of death.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Who yields time? The Senator from North Dakota.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, I intend to yield to the Senator from Massachusetts after I make a couple of observations about the comments of the Senator from Oregon.

In 1993, the United States supplied 75 percent of all

weapons sold to the Third World, the countries who can least afford to be buying arms--75 percent of the weapons that went to the Third World came from the United States. According to our State Department and their own human rights report, more than th ree-quarters of our arms sales in 1993 went to undemocratic governments. In other words, three-quarters of the arms we send around the world goes to governments listed by the State Department as authoritarian governments with serious human rights abuses. The people who live in those areas where these American weapons are coming in have every right to wonder about America. This legislation allows us to develop some standards that move in the right direction.

Mr. President, let me yield 5 minutes to the Senator from Massachusetts, Senator Kerry.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Massachusetts is recognized for 5 minutes.



Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, I send a second-degree amendment to the desk for immediate consideration. I assume that will not come up in time----

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Until the time is used or yielded back, the second-degree would not be in order.

[Page: S8784]

Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, we had a unanimous-consent agreement a few moments ago, allowing for the second-degree to be reported at such time as we deemed appropriate. I ask unanimous consent at this time I be permitted to submit my second-degree amendm ent, under the 5 minutes I have.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered. The clerk will report.

The assistant legislative clerk read as follows:

The Senator from Massachusetts [Mr. Kerry] proposes an amendment numbered 5046 to amendment No. 5045.

Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that reading of the amendment be dispensed with.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

The amendment is as follows:

At the end of the amendment, add the following new section:


(a) International Efforts: The President shall continue and expand efforts through the United Nations and other international forums, such as The Wassernaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual Use Goods and Te chnologies, to curb worldwide arms transfers, particularly to nations that do not meet the criteria establish a section 04, with a goal of establishing a permanent multilateral regime to govern the transfer of conventional arms.

(b) Report: The President shall submit an annual report to the Congress describing efforts he has undertaken to gain international acceptance of the principles incorporated in section 04, and evaluating the progress made toward establ ishing a multilateral regime to control the transfer of conventional arms. This report shall be submitted in conjunction with the submission of the annual request for authorizations and appropriations for foreign assistance programs for a fiscal year.

Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, before I explain my amendment I thank the distinguished Senator from Oregon, Senator Hatfield, for his extraordinary, long involvement in an effort to help educate and lead the U.S. Senate to a more rational a pproach to this question of proliferation, nuclear and conventional. When he leaves the Senate there will be an enormous gap with respect to that leadership and his voice, always clear even with laryngitis. I also welcome Senator Dorgan, whose history is not as long, but whose commitment is equally as passionate. I look forward to working with him in the future.

Their amendment embodies a fundamental shift in the way the United States needs to deal with the transfer of conventional weapons to the rest of the world. Like so many other aspects of our national security today, arms sales and other military assista nce needs still to be adjusted to the realities of the post-cold-war world. The central theme of our foreign policy has changed from containment of communism to expansion of democracy. So we no longer need to send these massive amounts of weaponry to our surrogates around the world in an arms race against communism.

Instead, we need to evaluate the effect that arms transfers have on regional stability, on the promotion of democracy, and on the protection of human rights. The legislation in front of us seeks to do that. It makes democracy, human rights, and nonaggr ession the central criteria for decisions on arms transfers. But equally important, it forces the U.S. Congress to take responsibility for approving such transfers to countries that do not meet the criteria set forth in the legislation.

Under the present system, the President just makes a determination of which countries will receive what weapons. In theory, the Congress could act to disapprove a specific sale, but in practice we all know it is very difficult and extremely rare that h appens. We ought to be more involved as a Congress in making these decisions. This legislation gives us a prominent role that is appropriate to the money that we spend on behalf of the taxpayers and to the interests we represent in the world. There still will be cases when it serves the interests of our country to transfer arms to countries that do not meet the criteria of this legislation. But in those cases, the Congress will have to agree with the President that such a transfer bolsters United States n ational security needs.

These changes in this legislation will focus congressional attention on the question of what really serves our interests and will, I hope, lead to a reduction in the extraordinarily dangerous worldwide proliferation of conventional weapons.

My amendment seeks to simply add one new section to this language. It instructs the President to expand the international efforts to curb worldwide arms sales and to work toward establishing a multilateral regime to govern the transfer of conventional weapons.

The amendment also requires the President to report annually to the Congress on steps that he is taking to gain international acceptance of the principles incorporated in this legislation and on the progress he is making toward establishing a permanent multilateral structure for controlling arms shipments.

I support the goals of this legislation, Mr. President. We ought to stop selling arms to nations, but the fact is that it is not just enough for us to set that example. The French, the Germans, Chinese, the Japanese, a host of other countries will rush in to fill the vacuum that we leave. What we need to do is create an international effort with our leadership that will provide the underlying force for this amendment and to guarantee that we do reduce arms proliferation in the world and slow the conven tional arms race of which we are currently the leader.

I thank the distinguished Senators from Oregon and North Dakota for their leadership, and I believe that my amendment is acceptable. If so, we can act on it immediately.

Mr. President, I believe there is no further debate. If the Chair is ready, we can act on this amendment.

The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Thompson). The question is on agreeing to the Kerry amendment No. 5046.

Mr. KERRY. I thank the Chair. I yield back whatever time remains to the Senator from North Dakota.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, I yield 6 minutes to the Senator from California, Senator Feinstein.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from California.

Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Mr. President, I thank the Senator, and I commend both the Senator from Oregon and the distinguished Senator from North Dakota, Senator Byron Dorgan, and the senior Senator from Illinois, Mr. Si mon, who is present on the floor, for their longtime support of this code of conduct.

I am a newcomer to this. Let me tell you what I feel. I am one who votes for defense appropriations. I want to see this Nation strong. I believe there is a deterrent value in having the best equipment, the best training and the most advanced technology for our armed forces. I believe that there is a price for freedom, and it is eternal vigilance.

But I did not come to the U.S. Senate to make the entire world less safe in the future than it was when I arrived. This code of conduct is an enormous addition to a major public policy debate and there are human dimensions to these decisions.

Every time I look into the big round eyes of my little 3-year-old granddaughter, Eileen, it is almost impossible not to ask, `Am I contributing to the kind of world in which I want my granddaughter to live? Is the world a safer place because of what I do in this body?' And I think about what that world will be like when she is 13 and 23 and 33 years old. That is not so long. Technology moves so fast, though. What kind of weapons will there be? Who will have them? How will they be used? Will they be use d against her in some way?

I am sorry to say these are not just the ruminations of an overprotective grandmother. These are very real and very frightening questions the people of America must ask themselves, because our country remains the biggest, the boldest and the largest ar ms purveyor in the world today.

Which brings us to the question that is before us: What should U.S. policy be regarding the sale of weapons?

I truly believe we need to take more time in deciding to whom we sell weapons, not only as a matter of conscience, but as a matter of national security.

What happens to the deterrent value of our military strength when we export technologies and weapons systems that are equal to that which our own troops use?

For example:

Kuwait had the new M1-A2 main battle tank before it was even delivered to U.S. forces. Saudi Arabia now has these tanks as well.

We have exported Patriot missiles to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.

F-16 and F-15 fighter planes, almost exactly what our Air Force is currently flying, have been exported to Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

Turkey and South Korea, as has been stated, are building F-16 fighters under coproduction agreements with the United States. In fact, there are more people, as Senator Hatfield said, building these planes in Turkey than there are in th e United States.

The upgrades of these F-16's will not even be performed by the United States. They will be done by Denmark, Sweden and Norway.

One of the main reasons the United States overwhelmed Iraq's military in the Gulf War was because our equipment was more technologically advanced. What will be the result the next time we go to war and our troops look across the battlefield at the same tank they are sitting in?

U.S. weapons have already been used against the United States overseas.

During the eighties, we sent Somalia 4,800 M-16 rifles, 84 106-millimeter recoilless rifles, 24 machine guns, 75 81-millimeter mortars and landmines. Guess what the `technicals" of Somali warlord Mohammed Farah Aideed used to ambush and kill 30 America ns soldiers? Our own weapons.

Iran has deployed the American Hawk anti-aircraft missiles in the Straits of Hormuz, which were exported to the Shah decades ago before the revolution.

Three-hundred U.S. Stinger anti-aircraft missiles provided to Afghani rebels are unaccounted for and are reportedly being sold on the black market.

Although we don't know the cause, wouldn't it be tragically ironic if the downing of TWA Flight 800 was because of a Stinger missile obtained on the black market?

Libya and North Korea may have acquired U.S. Stinger missiles through this very same black market.

How will these weapons be used? How stable are the regions to which U.S. weapons and technology are being transferred? Did you know that Turkey used U.S. COBRA helicopters to destroy small Kurdish villages?

Today, Iran is using the same F-14 fighters we exported to the Shah.

Allies change and governments fall. What happens if the Government of Saudi Arabia falls into Islamic fundamentalist hands?

What happens if tensions between Pakistan and India reach the boiling point? We are today escalating an arms race between these two countries.

Since the Reagan administration, arms have been treated more as items for international commerce than as tools to advance our national security. I believe this is dangerous and ultimately self-defeating.

The President, any President, is confronted with strong incentives to sell arms abroad, to bolster allies whose security is in our interest, to encourage diplomatic and economic cooperation. I don't believe it is realistic to think that in the face of these pressures, any American President alone is able to unilaterally change course and substantially limit arms sales without strong congressional support and even initiation. That is what we are considering today, initiating a code of conduct.

So it is for these reasons that I believe the code of conduct on arms transfers will help to bring some increased transparency and added consideration to the whole arms sales process. The code of conduct requires the President to develop a list of coun tries to which our Government may export weapons systems. Their criteria, outlined by the Dorgan/Hatfield amendment, is very basic, reasonable and flexible.

In instances where a country may not qualify, the President has the ability to ask the Congress for a national security waiver, or he may enact an emergency waiver on his own so that nation may receive U.S. arms. In this way, the President maintains th e flexibility he needs to deter aggressors and conduct foreign policy.

The United States continues to be the unquestioned leader in weapons technology. However, the United States currently exports 52 percent of all global arms sales, making us the leader in this dubious category as well. If we continue to export advanced and often sophisticated best weapons systems to volatile areas, we put our own troops and our national security at risk maybe not today, but what about next year and the next decade?

I am not saying that the United States should export no arms, but we must have a rational arms sales policy that first and foremost protects U.S. national security, and second does not gratuitously exacerbate a global arms race. I am very afraid that i f we continue to export the numbers and kinds of weapons systems and technologies we are currently, we will be less secure in the future, not more.

It is time for the United States to show a different kind of leadership, one encouraging restraint and transparency in the sale of arms around the world. By enacting the Code of Conduct, the United States will take an important step forward in a global effort to make the world a safer place for all.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator's 6 minutes have expired.

[Page: S8785]

Mrs. FEINSTEIN. I thank the Chair and yield the floor.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, I yield 4 minutes to the Senator from Illinois, Senator Simon.

Mr. SIMON. Mr. President, first I want to thank Senator Hatfield and Senator Dorgan for their leadership on this.

I am rounding out 22 years on Capitol Hill. I am a slow learner, Mr. President, but I have learned two things, among others. One is, do not get too cozy with dictators. Eighty-five percent of our weapons sent abroad are sent to nations the State Department identifies as human rights abusers. I thin k we ought to be careful. Second, I have learned that weapons we send abroad may be used against us. Senator Feinstein mentioned Somalia. We could be mentioning Panama, Haiti, Iraq, and other nations.

Back--I do not know--2 or 3 years ago I was in Angola with Senator Feingold and Senator Reid and visited the Swedish Red Cross place where they were fitting artificial limbs for children and adults. I saw the huge numb ers of people in Angola being fitted for those limbs in part because of American mines, in part because of American mines purchased with American funds. We are today, as has been pointed out, the No. 1 arms merchant in the world. And 56 percent of the arm s sold abroad, are sold by the United States.

While we are the No. 1 arms merchant, do you know where we are in foreign economic assistance to other countries, compared to the other Western European countries, Australia, New Zealand and Japan? We are dead last. One-sixth of 1 percent of our nation al income goes to help the poor beyond our borders. Norway is above 1.2 percent, and the other nations in between. And when you contrast what we do with weapons and what we do with economic assistance, it is kind of interesting.

From July 11 to 18, the National Basketball Association signed contracts totaling $927 million for free agents. Do you know what we are doing in providing development assistance for all of Africa, the poorest nation, poorest continent today, when you e xcept Egypt? We are spending a total of $628 million, less than we spent in 1 week for free agents for the National Basketball Association.

We need some sense of perspective. And for us to spend this amount of money on development assistance for poor countries, and then eagerly get every buck we can get so we can sell arms, and we do not care whether they are dictators or not dictators, th at just does not make sense. Without this particular amendment, frankly, we are not going to do anything.

We have not turned down an arms request from another country since the early 1980's when we turned down an AWAC's request from Saudi Arabia.

This amendment would start to put us in the right direction. Again, let me go to the bottom line. The No. 1 lesson we ought to learn is, do not get too cozy with dictators. And, No. 2, when you sell arms abroad to dictatorships, they may be used agains t you. I think those two lessons are just fundamental. I hope that we get a good vote on this amendment. I am realistic. Our friends in the defense industry obviously want to kill this amendment. But the merits are so overwhelming I hope we can pass it.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator's time has expired.

[Page: S8786]

Mr. DORGAN addressed the Chair.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from North Dakota.


Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, on behalf of Senator Inouye, I ask unanimous consent that privilege of the floor be granted to Roxanne Potosky, from his staff, during the consideration of H.R. 3540, the foreign operations appropriations bil l.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, I yield 3 minutes to the Senator from Rhode Island, Senator Pell.

Mr. PELL. I thank my Senate colleague.

Mr. PELL. Mr. President, I have been deeply impressed over the years by the strong and unwavering commitment to arms control shown by the senior Senator from Oregon, Mr. Hatfield. The Senator, who I am pleased to call a friend, has num erous accomplishments in the field of arms control to which he can point with pride.

As only one example, the current multinational moratorium on nuclear testing is essentially the result of an initiative he took several years ago as ranking member of the Committee on Appropriations. As many of my fellow Members are aware, a major effo rt is under way at the Conference on Disarmament to bring to a successful close negotiations on a comprehensive test ban to follow the international moratorium brought about largely through the efforts of the Senator and others of like mind.

I am pleased, too, that the Senator from North Dakota, Mr. Dorgan, has taken such a strong interest in this amendment, and I note with pleasure that we are joined by a number of cosponsors in support of the Arms Transfers Eligibility A ct of 1996.

The purpose of the amendment is to provide congressional review of the eligibility of foreign governments to be considered for United States military assistance and arms transfers and to establish clear standards for arms cooperation.

In effect, the major change proposed in the legislation is to emphasize a requirement for congressional involvement and approval that does not now exist. For 2 decades now, arms sales have been carried out under procedures giving Congress the right to disapprove particular sales if they appear inadvisable. Interestingly enough, in those 20 years, the Congress has come close on several occasions, but it has never succeeded in getting a resolution of disapproval enacted. This does not mean that Congress has not had a significant role. A large number of sales have been modified or withheld by the executive branch following congressional consultations. As ranking Democratic member and former Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations, I can assure you that the dialog on arms sales with succeeding administrations has been detailed and in depth and that a number of risky, threatening or destabilizing transfers have been averted.

I understand and appreciate the Senator from Oregon's deep concern over continued arms races throughout the world and his desire to apply serious limits and controls through the legislation now under consideration. I can also understand why some in thi s body would prefer a system under which the positive approval of Congress would be required for transfers and assistance to a number of particular counties, as contrasted with the present emphasis on the right of disapproval.

While I very much support the underlying concept of this initiative, as we explore this and other concepts further, we will want to take care to ensure that the legislation is workable in real world situations in its final form. For instance, certain q uestions are raised by the prohibition on arms transfers and assistance to governments other than democracies. The prohibition would appear to exclude any monarchy, emirate or sheikdom. All of those nations in the Persian Gulf that are scared to death of Iran and Iraq are kingdoms, emirates or sheikdoms, and would thus be ineligible for transfers or assistance, unless given a Presidential waiver and approved by Congress.

We will also want to make sure that we do not create a situation in which our decisions on transfers and some assistance are less balanced and deliberate and more chaotic or haphazard. It is very important that our defense industry and its thousands of American workers understand that we want both to improve the standards under which transfers are allowed, but that we will remain dedicated to our national security interests and to the security of our friends and allies throughout the world.

I am sure that these and other concerns can be met and strong, positive legislation that earns solid, bipartisan support can emerge. I would hope that is the case because much more needs to be done to put a lid on the continuing, desperately costly arm s competition throughout the world.

For the moment, I think it is important that we affirm our belief that democratic values, respect for human rights, avoidance of armed conflict in violation of international law, and participation in the U.N. register of conventional arms are all reaso nable standards by which we should judge whether we wish an arms relationship with another country.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, as a cosponsor of the Congressional Review of Arms Transfers Eligibility Act I support the amendment of the chairman of the Appropriations Committee, Senator Hatfield, and the Senator from North Dakota, Senato r Dorgan.

The world is awash in weapons, and there is not a political leader from any of the world's major arms sellers who has not made speeches about the evils of the arms trade.

Unfortunately, their rhetoric is not matched by action. In the United States, the defense industry, backed by the Pentagon, is using every trick in the trade to expand arms exports. The competition is fierce. Our allies, the Russians, the Chinese, and many others, are doing the same thing.

One would think that our experience in the Persian Gulf, where our troops came under fire by Iraqi soldiers armed with weapons we gave to Iraq during its war with Iran, or in Somalia where our troops were killed by United States-made weapons, would giv e us pause.

The weapons we sell have repeatedly fallen into the wrong hands. If they have not been used against us, they have often been used to commit abuses against innocent people elsewhere. In Afghanistan today, United States and Soviet weapons are being used to destroy what little is left of that country. Liberia is suffering the same fate. Turkey has used our weapons against Kurdish civilians. Indonesia, which faces no external threat, uses our weapons to crush internal dissent. In Central America, our weapo ns were used to commit unspeakable atrocities.

In the period since the end of the cold war and despite the collapse of the Soviet Union, we have exported $83 billion worth of military equipment, an increase of 140 percent. Most of this equipment has gone to developing countries, including to undemo cratic governments whose armed forces have been among the worst abusers of human rights. U.S. arms account for almost half of the weapons exported to those countries.

The governments of many developing countries cannot even feed their own people, and have no discernable enemy. Yet because of the political clout of their armed forces, scarce funds that might be available for education and health care and other social services are spent on weapons.

One would hope that the days of selling arms to dictators would be over. But this amendment would not prevent us from selling or giving arms to a dictator, or even to a government that engages in gross violations of human rights.

What this amendment would do, is define basic criteria for the transfer of arms. Even if a government is not democratic, violates human rights, and fails to participate in the U.N. registry of conventional arms, it would still be eligible for U.S. mili tary equipment under this amendment, if the Congress agrees.

I suspect if we asked the American people, the majority would say this amendment does not go far enough.

What could possible be wrong with giving Congress a say over these decisions? Haven't we had enough of our own weapons coming back to haunt us?

Some have argued that this amendment would hurt the arms industry. Baloney. It is a well-kept secret that the economic burdens of arms transfers is costing taxpayers billions of dollars, including both direct and indirect costs. By the end of this deca de, more than half of U.S. weapons sales will be paid for by American taxpayers.

The real issue is what is right for national security. That is the primary criteria for arms transfers, and this amendment does not alter that one bit.

Mr. President, it is long overdue for Congress to exercise some meaningful review of decisions to sell arms to governments that do not meet the most elementary standards of conduct. That is all this amendment does. It should have been the law a long t ime ago.

[Page: S8787]

Mrs. KASSEBAUM. Mr. President, today I will cast my vote in favor of the Hatfield amendment to prevent U.S. arms exports to countries that are undemocratic or that violate human rights--unless, of course, our national security interests override those concerns.

I am well aware of this legislation's shortcomings, and I do not cast this vote lightly. But today I dissent from those who would continue to expand America's arms exports.

We cannot stand by indefinitely as the current international arms bazaar continues to grow. And we must in honesty acknowledge that America's arms export policy has substantially contributed to the problem. Fully half of all international weapons transfer s in 1994 came from the United States. A year later, in 1995, we more than doubled the number of major conventional weapons that we sent abroad.

Arms transfers can serve important American interests and, indeed, the majority of our shipments go to our NATO allies or to our major strategic allies in other regions of the world. These important transfers that serve our national interests would wit hstand closer scrutiny by Congress.

But too often we have seen arms we transferred abroad used to repress democracy and human rights rather than to support freedom. As chairman of the Africa Subcommittee, I have seen teenagers in Liberia and Angola who have learned to shoot before learni ng to read. I have seen countries whose meager coffers have been drained to purchase weapons of war while their people suffer an unconscionable standard of living. Perhaps during the cold war, when we were locked in a global struggle with communism, consi derations such as these were necessarily secondary. But no more.

We cannot be responsible for the misconduct of other governments. But we can refuse to participate in arming repressive regimes or strengthening the hand of those who grossly violate human rights. We can encourage the forces of liberty abroad--in count ries friend and foe alike--by making clear that the price for American arms includes progress on human rights and democratic government.

The liberal transfer of arms abroad puts our national interest at risk. Our soldiers already have faced American weapons in combat. More often, they have faced weapons supplied freely by other major arms exporters. Yet, as long as we are the world's la rgest seller of arms, we have little leverage to press other exporters to curtail transfers we oppose.

Mr. President, I am under no illusion that this legislation will become law. But for that very reason, I view this as a vote not just about the specific language and procedures in this amendment but about the overall direction of America's arms export policy. I believe that policy, on the whole, is headed in the wrong direction. For that reason, I am voting for a change.


Mr. JEFFORDS. Mr. President, I rise in support of the amendment offered by my colleagues the Senator from South Dakota, Mr. Dorgan, and the senior Senator from Oregon, Mr. Hatfield. This amendment would significantly r eform the criteria by which U.S. arms sales are evaluated and enhance the roll of Congress in the process.

Under the Arms Export Control Act, arms sales are reviewed for their compliance with several criteria, including whether a foreign government respects human rights and avoids acts of international aggression. Under this amendment, consideration would a lso be given to whether a government adheres to democratic principles and whether it participates in the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms. And under this amendment, Congress would review and pass judgement on any sale that the Administration h as approved to a nation that did not meet these requirements.

While Congress technically has the option to disapprove of any sale that does not meet the criteria of the Arms Export Control Act, in fact, it rarely exercises that right, and little attention was paid to many controversial sales. At no time was a com prehensive review of pending arms sales actively examined and approved by Congress. This process is no longer acceptable, and the changes that this amendment would bring to this process are welcome.

Yes, the Cold War is over, but we all realize that in many respects, the world does not seem like a safer place, in part because American arms are helping to fuel conflicts around the world that we then must try to resolve. An obvious way to reduce the frequency of this happening is to more closely scrutinize the sales being made to countries who do not share our basic ideology and respect for human rights. And the Congress should be given a greater role in this process. I urge my colleagues to support the Dorgan-Hatfield amendment.

Mr. McCONNELL addressed the Chair.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Kentucky.

Mr. McCONNELL. How much time remains for the opposition to this amendment?

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Twenty minutes.

Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I will not use that. I understand Senator Domenici is lurking and may be available to offer his amendment. And there is a little more debate on the Burma amendment. And we may well stack three votes for ar ound 6 o'clock, or thereabouts, just to give an overview of where we are.

Let me say, Mr. President, with regard to the Dorgan amendment, the Clinton administration is strongly opposed to the amendment on the grounds that human rights and democracy are relevant criteria but not the only criteria about which arms sales should be evaluated. Regional security and stability may be overriding considerations in making a decision to proceed with a transaction. Arms transfers serve key foreign policy concerns and no single issue can be the only or primary consideration.

Let me give you an example, Mr. President. The amendment could well cut off the transfer of arms to key allies in the Middle East, for example, or in central Europe. And so the question arises, is this really in our best interest to make this kind of c ertification process a precondition for the transfer of arms to key allies?

So, Mr. President, I hope that the amendment will not be approved. Rarely do I find myself speaking on behalf of the Clinton administration, but my suspicion is that any administration would be opposed to this, that it would not be in our Nation's best interests.

I hope that the amendment will not be agreed to.

Mr. President, I am prepared to yield back the balance of my time, if I can locate Senator Domenici. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.

The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.

Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum call be rescinded.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, is the Senator from Kentucky yielding back his time? If so, I will take the remainder of my time.

Mr. McCONNELL. I yield back the balance of my time.

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, I have 3 minutes remaining, is that correct?

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator is correct.

[Page: S8788]

Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, I suspect most administrations oppose this kind of proposal because it does not allow them complete and unrestrained freedom to do whatever they want wherever they want in the world.

However, this proposal has an enormous amount of common sense. We are not proposing something that would restrict critically needed arms transfers to our allies in the Middle East, for example. We specifically have a provision in this amendment that re solves that issue. That cannot be argued.

I say this: With respect to arms transfers that have occurred in other parts of the world over all of these years, this country ought to start to rethink these issues. We sold Iraq cluster bombs for its war against Iran, and only because of our superio r air power did American troops not face those same American-made cluster bombs in the Middle East.

We sold Somalia 4,800 M-16 rifles, 8,400 6-millimeter recoilless rifles; 24 machine guns, 75 81-millimeter mortars, landmines. Guess what happened? Mr. Aideed would use them to kill 23 American soldiers.

This has really gone on long enough. There ought to be some basic standard by which we measure whether it is in our country's interest to continue shipping arms to every single dictator in the world, to country after country, dictator after dictator, w ithout regard to how those countries behave or without regard to whether American men and women wearing our uniforms may face those same weapons made by American workers again at some point in the future.

We are not proposing anything radical. We are proposing something that says arms transfers ought to be made in circumstances where they are promoting democracy, where they are respecting human rights, not killing innocent people, where they are observi ng international borders, not attacking their neighbors, and where they participate in the U.N. conventional arms registry. That makes a lot of common sense.

It is especially now time for this country to lead. It is time for America to provide leadership on this issue. Frankly, this chart is appalling. This country, the symbol of freedom, the torch of liberty for the world, ought not be the world's arms mer chant. No one ought to be able to point to a chart and say the United States of America provides 52 percent of all the arms transfers in the world. And a substantial majority go to countries in which the State Department says those countries are countries with authoritarian governments who are abusing human rights of people in their own countries.

I do not ever want to be able to point to a chart like this in the future. I want foreign arm sales and military sales and arms transfers to be made when it represents good common sense, when it is in our interest, when it is in the world's interest. I f we can provide leadership and the Europeans can provide leadership to develop a code of conduct on when arms should be transferred, this will be a safer world--yes, for the children that Senator Feinstein talked about, for my children, your children and all children.

To keep doing what we are doing makes no good sense at all for anyone in this world. It provides a more unstable and a more unsafe world. This amendment, if adopted, would provide for a safer, more stable world. I hope the Senate, when it votes this ev ening, will finally, after some two long decades of having this

discussed, take the first step to say this is the right direction, this is a step toward a safer world, this is a step toward American leadership to do what is right.

I yield the floor and I yield back the balance of my time. I ask for the yeas and nays on our amendment.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there a sufficient second?

There is a sufficient second.

The yeas and nays were ordered.

Mr. BOND addressed the Chair.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Missouri is recognized.


Mr. BOND. I thank the Chair and the managers of the bill. I rise in opposition to the Dorgan-Hatfield amendment. I have great respect for both of the sponsors of this amendment. I can sympathize with their objectives. I think they are operating from th e noblest of motives. Once again, I believe that this amendment causes far more problems than it solves. The current Arms Export Control Act requires the executive branch to assure that any sales are in the interest of the foreign policy of the United Sta tes. When the executive branch decides to go forth with a sale, the Congress is notified and reviews the sale. Modifications to sales or a withdrawal of the sale request has occurred because of these congressional reviews. Pakistan is one such example.

Now, the restrictive nature of the amendment on which we are going to be voting in a few minutes would arbitrarily cut out all but a few select countries in the world. Many other countries would argue that perhaps even the United States could not meet these standards. There is yet to be a clear definition of a political prisoner or what constitutes aggression under international law or discrimination on the basis of race, religion on gender. Very few countries have a history of elective democracy such as ours. We are not against the intent of this amendment, but I think it puts overly restrictive limitations on the administration and on our military and economic sectors.

There are over 40,000 export licenses for munitions issued per year which we may very well have to review on a case-by-case basis above and beyond what the executive branch already does.

Some of our NATO allies would be called into question. For example, Turkey, as well as our long-term friends like Israel who might be challenged on the basis of the treatment of Palestinian terrorists, or political prisoners. Spain can be attacked on t he basis of its treatment of Basques, or perhaps even England for its quagmire with the IRA. Saudi Arabia and Egypt could be adversely affected by this amendment.

Where we have not had contact in countries like Cuba, communism continues to flourish in spite of our ever increasingly restrictive sanctions. They are not working there. This amendment would not prevent the procurement of weapons. It would allow the p rocurement of weapons from possibly rogue states and arbitrarily lock us out of a major conduit of foreign policy.

Mr. President, this is a very serious amendment. Its effect would be to immobilize the administration from normal conduct of its foreign policy, trade policy, and military policy as it would create lists of countries for congressional approval every ye ar and then await for approval each year. Each year this body would be tied up in the process of giving a country-by-country approval needlessly antagonizing countries who support our policies. And it will most likely not affect the trade policies of our competitors, including allies. There will be no reduction in arms sales--only in U.S. businesses, jobs and, most importantly, U.S. influence.

The influence extends beyond business and military interests. It extends to our ability to work diplomatically and subtly across all policy issues. The world has changed, continues to change. The Communist monolith is crumbling. But the fact is that th e countries with whom we have had a defense relationship are in general gravitating towards more democratic political systems and market-oriented economies.

There is no empirical evidence that by unilaterally denying ourselves access to other countries' military and political infrastructures that we have had or will have any positive impact on democratizing them or improving their human rights records.

The legislation is counterproductive. It would make the world less stable. We would have less influence over proliferation and lose our ability to provide a positive political effect on a military policy of friendly countries.

I urge my colleagues to recognize that while this amendment has been offered with all good intentions and with the highest of purposes, it is a significantly flawed piece of legislation that would have very much an unanticipated and very harmful impact .

I hope we will vote it down.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there further debate?

[Page: S8807]

Mr. BOND. Mr. President, I move to table the Dorgan amendment, and I ask for the yeas and nays.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there a sufficient second?

There is a sufficient second.

The yeas and nays were ordered.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The question is on agreeing to the motion of the Senator from Missouri to lay on the table the amendment of the Senator from North Dakota. On this question, the yeas and nays have been ordered, and the clerk will call the roll.

The assistant legislative clerk called the roll.

[Editorial Note: The vote was on a motion to kill the Hatfield-Dorgan Code of Conduct. So a Yes vote is against the Code; a No vote is for the Code. The amendment was agreed to by a vote of 65-35 (Republicans 50-3; Democrats 15-32).]

The result was announced--yeas 65, nays 35, as follows:

Rollcall Vote No. 241 Leg.

[Rollcall Vote No. 241 Leg.]


  • Abraham
  • Ashcroft
  • Baucus
  • Bennett
  • Bond
  • Breaux
  • Brown
  • Burns
  • Byrd
  • Campbell
  • Chafee
  • Coats
  • Cochran
  • Cohen
  • Coverdell
  • Craig
  • D'Amato
  • DeWine
  • Dodd
  • Domenici
  • Faircloth
  • Ford
  • Frahm
  • Frist
  • Glenn
  • Gorton
  • Graham
  • Gramm
  • Grams
  • Grassley
  • Gregg
  • Hatch
  • Heflin
  • Helms
  • Hollings
  • Hutchison
  • Inhofe
  • Johnston
  • Kempthorne
  • Kerrey
  • Kyl
  • Lieberman
  • Lott
  • Lugar
  • Mack
  • M cCain
  • McConnell
  • Murkowski
  • Nickles
  • Nunn
  • Pressler
  • Robb
  • Rockefeller
  • Roth
  • Santorum
  • Shelby
  • Simpson
  • Smith
  • Snowe
  • Specter
  • Stevens
  • Thomas
  • Thompson
  • Thurmond
  • Warner


  • Akaka
  • Biden
  • Bingaman
  • Boxer
  • Bradley
  • Bryan
  • Bumpers
  • Conrad
  • Daschle
  • Dorgan
  • Exon
  • Feingold
  • Feinstein
  • Harkin
  • Hatfield
  • Inouye
  • Jeffords
  • Kassebaum
  • Kennedy
  • Kerry
  • Kohl
  • Laut enberg
  • Leahy
  • Levin
  • Mikulski
  • Moseley-Braun
  • Moynihan
  • Murray
  • Pell
  • Pryor
  • Reid
  • Sarbanes
  • Simon
  • Wellstone
  • Wyden

The motion was agreed to.

Mr. BOND. Mr. President, I move to reconsider the vote.

Mr. LOTT. I move to lay that motion on the table.

The motion to lay on the table was agreed to.

FAS Home | ASMP Home | Search | About ASMP
Publications | Sales Data | Issues | Resources