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National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2008 -- (House of Representatives - May 16, 2007)

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(Mr. PUTNAM asked and was given permission to revise and extend his remarks.)

Mr. PUTNAM. Madam Chairman, I thank the gentleman from Arizona for his leadership.

I was struck by something that the subcommittee chairman said during the debate on the last amendment regarding missile defense, which is the concession that the threat from attacks by missile is real. I would submit that it is real, it is significant, and it is growing; and the notion that we would scale back this Nation's preparedness from rogue nations such as North Korea and Iran and the ever-mounting potential threat coming from China, all three of whom have tested ballistic missiles in the last year, is folly, it is reckless, and it puts U.S. interests and U.S. allies gravely at risk.

It is inarguable that the risk from a missile attack is not greater today than it has ever been from the most dangerous and least reliable sources, those who are willing to trade in the terrorist black market of technology and weapons of mass destruction, those who have declared Israel's need to be wiped off the face of the Earth and those who have declared death to America.

We cannot lose sight of this important, over-the-horizon danger by cutting back on funds, researching and developing an adequate missile defense for our country and our allies.

Madam Chairman, I submit to you that there is a vital difference between the direction that the majority and the minority would take U.S. defense policy in this environment. We cannot cut back on our missile defenses in this country and in this environment.

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