Victims' Rights Caucus

Speeches

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I want to thank the gentlelady for yielding time on this important issue.

   Redeployment. Withdrawal. These words mean the same thing, ``we quit.'' ``Quitting'' Iraq is not a plan. It's not even a strategy; it is a total handoff of responsibility to an unstable government with an ill-prepared military.

   I don't dispute that we must do more to ready Iraqis to handle their own security. I do insist, however, that we cannot suddenly leave the Iraqis scrambling to defend their new brand of democracy amidst chaos. That is what this ``leave at any cost'' plan would do: leave our enemies and those of the Iraqi people unfettered and free to pursue their diabolical agenda in Iraq and throughout the world.

   So I would like to ask those who want to quit exactly what they plan to do to fight the terrorist operatives in Iraq when our troops turn around and leave. What is the plan?

   I would also like to know, who, besides the ``New York Times'', is saying that the fight is lost in Iraq? Reports indicate that our troops are making progress. Sectarian murders in Baghdad have declined in the last 6 months. More Iraqis are coming to American troops with information about the terrorists. And Iraqi citizens are organizing against al Qaeda at the local level. Good for them.

   Mr. Speaker, General Patton sailed with his soldiers from Algiers to Italy in World War II, and he said to them, ``No man is beaten until he thinks he is.'' This war is not over unless we quit. And when we quit, we are certainly defeated.

   Here is what the defeatists say about the battle. They say that our troops were ill-prepared to go into battle, and there weren't enough of them; that they had inferior equipment; that they had improper uniforms for the extreme weather; U.S. intelligence was flawed; that we underestimated the resolve of the enemy; that Americans and our allies were killed by friendly fire. No, Mr. Speaker, this is not the war in Iraq, but this is the Battle of the Bulge in World War II, a battle that my father fought in. Those Americans, led by General Patton and others, did not run or quit because war is hard. You do not win wars by evacuating. And Americans won the Battle of the Bulge and broke the will of the enemy.

   I ask this question: How does this plan to force the United States to withdraw from Iraq differ from al Qaeda's plan to force us to withdraw from Iraq? Why wouldn't al Qaeda celebrate if this bill is passed?    Mr. Speaker, General Patton went on to say to his troops, ``The glory of American arms, the honor of our country, the future of the whole world rests in our individual hands. See to it that you are worthy of this great trust.''

   I do believe, Mr. Speaker, that the honor of our country is at stake again today, but that's not all. Our security, the security of Iraqis, and the future of democracy and liberty in the Middle East, all of these are in our hands.

   Let us be worthy of this trust. And that's the way it is.

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