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Wilson Statement on Armed Services Hearing with Secretary Gates

January 27, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 27, 2009

CONTACT: Ryan Murphy

(202) 225-2452 (Office)

(202) 689-4825 (Cell)

Wilson Statement on Armed Services Hearing with Secretary Gates

WASHINGTON – Congressman Joe Wilson (SC-02) issued the following statement today after Secretary of Defense Robert Gates spoke at a hearing of the House Armed Services Committee.

“I appreciate Secretary Gates’ comments before the House Armed Services Committee today, and I am grateful that he has agreed to continue serving in President Obama’s administration.

“It is clear from the Secretary’s remarks that he understands that the best way to protect American families here at home is by defeating the terrorists overseas. We have seen the heroic success of our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines in Iraq under the professional leadership of General David Petraeus and now General Ray Odierno. We also understand that there is tremendous work ahead for our military and diplomatic corps to secure the gains we have made.

“Secretary Gates has made it clear that our efforts in Afghanistan require greater involvement by American military as well as a stronger contribution by our NATO allies. Al Qaeda and Taliban terrorists must not be able to seek or secure a safe haven along the Afghan-Pakistan border, and I look forward to continuing to work with Secretary Gates and President Obama to ensure our military have the tools and resources they need.

“Recently, President Obama signed an Executive Order to close the detention facilities at Guantanamo Bay within a year. This decision has significant consequences for our nation’s security. I encourage Secretary Gates to work with Congress on this important issue. The American people have legitimate concerns about the prospect of bringing terrorists suspects onto American soil, and there are already documented cases of terrorist being released and returning to the battlefield.”

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