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National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. POMPEO. Mr. Chairman, I thank you.

There are a few facts that I think are appropriate to bring to this debate. I oppose this amendment vigorously. Just 2 weeks ago I was down at Guantanamo Bay on a trip that was part of the House Select Committee on Intelligence. I will tell you that the soldiers and marines and airmen of Joint Task Force Gitmo are taking tremendous care of the facilities, our assets and the detainees.

Those who suggest that this facility should go away will create a problem that is worse than the one that we have today. This amendment is simply a pattern of appeasement that does not comport with the fact that radical Islamic terrorists will not cease to attack us simply because we wish they would go away.

A few more facts. If we close Guantanamo Bay, we try to release them to countries that will accept them, we know that at least a quarter of them will return to the battlefield. We could bring them back to the United States, where they'd go to civilian courts, and undoubtedly some of them would end up walking the streets of the United States.

One of the final facts, and one that I've heard said in support of this amendment, is that if we simply close this facility that recruiting for radical extremists will diminish. This seems illogical. There's no support for such a statement. They will continue to attack us whether we keep this open or closed. This facility is legal, it's just, and it is an important national asset.


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