US Senator Richard Blumenthal (above surveying Hurricane Irene damage in Connecticut) had an important exchange in Wednesday's Senate Armed Services Committee with the Pentagon's Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Jo Ann Rooney.
Senator Richard Blumenthal's office issued the following today:
(Hartford, CT) – U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) today released the following statement on military and humanitarian operations in Iraq:
“I oppose open-ended military commitments, which the President’s actions in Iraq could become. Humanitarian relief is necessary to prevent genocide and provide food and water to meet an urgent emergency, but the President owes the American people a better, fuller explanation of the scope and strategy of military actions. I am deeply concerned that these actions could lead to prolonged direct military involvement, which I would strongly oppose. As a condition for any military aid in Iraq, I have said that there must be a new government that is inclusive and unifying. I continue to believe that the current situation in Iraq is a failure of Iraq’s leaders, who have used the security forces – with training and equipment we provided – for their own sectarian ends, rather than uniting their country. It is also a consequence of the failure of the international community to contain the ongoing civil war in Syria. I support the President’s diplomatic effort to work with Iraqi leaders and the countries in the region to support stability in Iraq.”
Senator Blumenthal is a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.