WASHINGTON –Subcommittee on National Security Ranking Member Glenn Grothman (R-Wis.) opened today’s hearing on “Examining the Worldwide Threat of Al Qaeda, ISIS, and Other Foreign Terrorist Organizations” by blasting Committee Democrats for refusing to hold a hearing on President Biden’s disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan. He emphasized the Biden Administration’s failure resulted in the deaths of 13 servicemembers and created a national security and humanitarian crisis. Subcommittee Ranking Member Grothman concluded his statement by urging the Biden Administration to provide a plan on how it plans to prevent Afghanistan from becoming a safe haven for terrorism once again.
Below are Subcommittee on National Security Ranking Member Grothman’s remarks as prepared for delivery.
Good morning, I want to thank our witnesses for being here today.
Today, we are here to discuss the QUOTE worldwide threat END QUOTE of terrorism.
Interestingly, you were originally invited to this hearing weeks ago with a different theme.
Back then, the hearing was going to cover the QUOTE continued threat posed by…terrorist organizations following the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan END QUOTE.
I wonder why the change.
I wish this hearing was focused on Afghanistan.
The world watched as the Biden Administration botched the withdrawal leading to the deaths of 13 servicemembers in an explosion outside the Kabul airport.
President Biden promised we wouldn’t see another Saigon.
He was wrong.
He promised he would get all Americans and our allies out of harm’s way.
But he abandoned them.
He promised that al-Qaeda was gone.
Common sense says that’s just not true.
He promised his over-the-horizon capabilities were just as good as traditional means of counter-terror.
Then launched a drone strike that killed ten civilians, including children.
Any one of these failures warrants a hearing, but Committee Democrats refuse to hold one.
I wonder why.
Since the withdrawal, life in Afghanistan has not improved.
· The Taliban’s new government contains U.S.-recognized terrorists;
· The Taliban threw a military parade with U.S. equipment;
· The Taliban are brutally beating women and girls protesting for their rights; and
· The Taliban are actively hunting our allies for execution. But this Committee remains silent while it has held hearings on bills not in our committee’s jurisdiction, paychecks for soccer players, and the Democrats’ radical Green New Deal pipedream.
I hope we can learn today about how the Biden Administration:
· Plans to ensure the safety of all Afghans, particularly our allies and women and girls;
· What our current over-the-horizon capabilities are;
· And how the Biden Administration plans to stop Afghanistan from becoming a safe haven for terrorism once again.
The last time the Taliban controlled Afghanistan, the result was the worst attack on the homeland in six decades.
I sincerely hope we are well positioned to stop that from happening again. Thank you again to our witnesses.
I yield back.