U.S. Congressman Patrick Meehan (PA-07), Chairman of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, today released the following statement:
"The success of the V-22 Osprey has once again been validated for its unparalleled ability to perform. A recent article in The New Yorker confirmed that the V-22 was used to transport the body of Osama bin Laden from Afghanistan to the U.S. S. Carl Vinson for burial at sea. When the President and other intelligence officials were deciding what assets to utilize during one of the most important missions in our nation's history, they chose the V-22."
Although the raid on the bin Laden compound was successfully concluded, huge risks remained. U.S. officials were concerned about crossing back into Pakistani airspace.
"The Americans, yet again, were about to traverse Pakistani airspace without permission," the article stated. "Some officials worried that the Pakistanis, stung by the humiliation of the unilateral raid in Abbottabad, might restrict the Osprey's access. The airplane ultimately landed on the Vinson without incident."
Earlier this year, Congressman Meehan played an integral role in securing a provision in the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2012 that supports funding for the Osprey Program. Meehan also led an effort to support the V-22 during Congressional debate of H.R.1, the Full Year Continuing Appropriations Act when two amendments were offered which would have cut funding for the Osprey. Also this year, Meehan toured and met with employees at the Boeing facility in Ridley Township, which manufactures part of the V-22.