Kerry Appointed Chairman of Senate Foreign Relations Committee
Thirty seven years after testifying in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee as a young soldier returning from Vietnam, Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) today was named the Committee's Chairman for the 111th Congress.
Kerry released the following statement from Islamabad, Pakistan as part of his first trip abroad as the incoming Chair. Other countries on the trip include Poland, Georgia, India, Afghanistan, and Kuwait:
"I am honored to serve as Chairman of a committee which I know from my own experience as a young man can impact the course of our security and help advance our values and interests in the world. It's particularly a privilege to join in the committee's rich history of bipartisan cooperation alongside my colleague and our distinguished Ranking Member, Dick Lugar. Whether it was under the Republican Chairman Vandenberg or the great Democratic Chairman William Fulbright, this committee has always stood for the best of American foreign policy. I look forward to working with all members of the committee to help strengthen America's hand in Afghanistan and Pakistan, work towards global climate change solutions, and end the war in Iraq responsibly. We have a big agenda ahead of us, just as our country faces big challenges across the globe."
In his 23 years on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Kerry has chaired the Asia and Middle East subcommittees and authored and passed major legislation on international drug trafficking, global AIDS, international money laundering, and climate change - and negotiated the UN's genocide tribunal to prosecute war crimes in Cambodia's Killing Fields.