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The Week Just Past: A Week of Painful Reminders


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"This week was a week of painful reminders.

"Tuesday's 11th anniversary of the attacks on 9-11, the volatile protests outside our embassies in the Middle East and the murder of our Ambassador to Libya and the other three diplomats make it very clear that the world remains a dangerous place.

"We honor Ambassador Christopher Stevens. All Americans extend their sympathy to his family, salute his career in our Foreign Service and mourn with the families of others who lost their lives serving our country in Libya.

"Of course, the American people are justifiably focused on our struggling economy and the need to create jobs, which has been my priority as well. To this end, I have outlined an action plan for economic growth and private sector job creation that can serve as a foundation for bipartisan cooperation.

"But terrible incidents such as those this week in Libya highlight the ongoing security challenges we face around the world. However, while we condemn this vicious and violent attack that took the lives of our dedicated diplomats, we also have to make sure that Armed Forces and our intelligence community have the resources and the tools they need to protect our interests around the globe. And now more than ever, America must show resolve and leadership both in our words and in our actions.

"The Wall Street Journal was right this week when it declared on its editorial page, "When America retreats, bad actors…fill the vacuum.'

"That's why we must continue to work to find a way to prevent the crippling defense budget cuts scheduled to take effect in January. Clearly, the Department of Defense should not be immune to budget decreases. However, wholesale reductions will damage our national security and send a signal of weakness to our friends and enemies alike.

"In the meantime, we must redouble our efforts to combat extremist terrorism across the globe and we should not be deterred from continuing to promote peace, democracy, individual and religious freedom throughout the world."

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