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Message From the Senate

Location: Washington, DC

MESSAGE FROM THE SENATE -- (House of Representatives - June 15, 2006)


Mr. ISSA. Mr. Speaker, I certainly think it is important that this debate go back and forth as it has between the defeatist attitude of my colleagues and what I believe is the appropriate stay the course of this side of the aisle.

Mr. Speaker, we are often alleged of only doing two things in the Congress, either nothing or overreacting. Today, by a measured response of saying stay the course, we are doing exactly what we need to do. This is not meaningless.

Just in the last week a declassified document taken from the safehouse in which Zarqawi met his appropriate punishment, and I will read just short excerpts, our time is short, but they are meaningful and I think many Members listening throughout their offices and here on the floor probably have not yet read this.

Zarqawi says, however, here in Iraq, speaking of why time is on the side of al Qaeda, however, here in Iraq, time is now beginning to be of service to the American forces and harmful to the resistance for the following reasons.

He goes on to talk about the formation of the National Guard. He goes on to talk about the impact on the resistance of various improvements there. He goes on to talk about how we the Americans and the Iraqis have undertaken a media campaign against the resistance and it is working.

He goes on to say, the resistance has had its financial outlets cut off and restricted. He talks about how, in fact, we have been effective in creating big divisions among the ranks of what he called the resistance.

He then plots to find a way to get America embroiled in yet another conflict with another enemy. And he is speaking of Iran. He then plots on how he might convince us that Iran was further along in its weapons of mass destruction. He then plots no more.

Mr. Speaker, we have done, for once, the even, middle-road thing we have to do. We did not go into this war the way we went into, as Congressman Murtha said, Beirut, only a little bit, only not enough, and only for a little while.

We have gone into the war on terrorism with commitment from this Congress, in Afghanistan, in Iraq, in the South of the Philippines, wherever the terrorists may be; and we said we will stay the long haul in each of these places.

My time is short. I just want to do two things. One is, to say that, unlike Congressman Murtha, I did not serve in combat. But I entered the Army in 1970, and I entered as a grandson of Lebanese immigrants.

And throughout the 1970s and 1980s and 1990s, I visited Lebanon, and I visited the region, and I got to know my fellow Arabs of the world. And I knew there was a problem and they knew there was a problem and we were not addressing it. We are now addressing it.

So we will be punished by the opposition any time we either do nothing or do something. But I would rather do something in the interests of freedom.


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