A picture of Representative Sheila Jackson Lee
Sheila J.
Democrat TX 18

About Rep. Sheila
  • Expressing Support for President’s Plan to Defeat Isis

    by Representative Sheila Jackson Lee

    Posted on 2015-12-10

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    JACKSON LEE of texas in the house of representatives Thursday, December 10, 2015 Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Speaker, this past Sunday evening, President Obama addressed the nation and detailed his four-part plan, as Commander-in-Chief, to keep the American people safe from terrorist acts committed by terrorist groups like ISIL and al Qaeda or by persons abroad or lone wolf ``franchise terrorists'' at home who are inspired by groups that profane the peaceful religion of Islam.

    First, the plan calls for our military to continue hunting down terrorist plotters in any country where it is necessary.

    In Iraq and Syria, American airpower has been used to great effect, taking out ISIL leaders, heavy weapons, oil tankers, and infrastructure.

    Second, the plan calls for the United States to take away safe havens for terrorists by continuing to provide training and equipment to the tens of thousands of Iraqi and Syrian forces fighting ISIL.

    The third part of the plan involves working with friends and allies to disrupt ISIL's operations by cutting off access to financing and disrupting recruitment efforts.

    Finally, the plan calls for continued American leadership, working in conjunction with the international community, to establish a process-- and timeline--to pursue ceasefires and a political resolution to the Syrian civil war.

    Ending the civil war in Syria will allow the Syrian people, our allies, and also Russia, to focus on the common goal of destroying ISIL.

    Critics have every right to disagree with the President's approach but they also have an obligation to propose realistic and practical alternatives to the President's plan, which, by the way, has been designed by American military commanders and counterterrorism experts and supported by the 65 countries that are part of the American-led coalition.

    Our quarrel is not with Islam so I also commend the President's appeal for calm, unity, and cooperation among all persons of goodwill both in the United States and around the world.

    The terrorist attacks in San Bernardino were horrific acts on innocent civilians perpetrated [[Page E1771]] by depraved individuals who pledge allegiance to organizations that misuse the peaceful religion of Islam for their own misguided purposes.

    Such horrible and heinous acts are the responsibility of the perpetrators, and theirs alone, and for which they can be assured that they alone will be held accountable.

    This was one of the central messages conveyed during the Prayer Vigil and Unity Press Conference I led last Sunday afternoon in Houston, the 4th largest and most diverse city in the United States.

    In addition to the steps laid out by the President, I also believe there are additional steps the Congress should take, including bringing to the floor for debate and vote to pass H.R. 48, the ``No Fly for Foreign Fighters Act,'' that I introduced earlier this year.

    This legislation would require TSA to check the Terrorist Screening Database and the terrorist watch list used in determining whether to permit a passenger to board a U.S.-bound or domestic flight and to take appropriate steps to ensure that those who pose a threat to aviation safety or national security are included in the Terrorism Database.

    I ask a moment of silence for the victims killed and injured in the attacks by franchise terrorists last Wednesday in San Bernardino, California.


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