On Sunday, Representative Adam Schiff, a Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, returned from a weeklong trip where he visited American troops in Afghanistan and had an extended meeting with General Stanley McChrystal. Schiff travelled to Kandahar province, Kabul and Bagram -- getting a firsthand update on the offensive in Marjah, as well as efforts to train Afghan police and government officials. During the visit, Schiff had several meals with troops from California, and flew in a C-130 piloted by California Air National Guardsmen. On the return trip, the Congressman visited injured servicemembers who were being treated at the American military base in Ramstein, Germany.
"I could not have been more impressed by the courage demonstrated by our troops and intelligence agency employees who are continually in harm's way. The wounded warriors I met at the hospital in Landstuhl could not have been more inspiring -- their top concern was for their colleagues who were still on the battlefield."
Prior to arriving in Afghanistan, Schiff visited Sanaa, the capital of Yemen, where he met with intelligence officials to discuss ongoing efforts to fight Al Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula. The Christmas day bomber, Umar Abdulmutallab, was trained and equipped for his suicide mission in Yemen, which has an increasing Al Qaeda presence.
Schiff also visited Pakistan, meeting with President Zardari and other government officials to discuss common efforts in the battle against extremism.