tv Today in Washington CSPAN May 31, 2011 6:00am-7:00am EDT
routine patrols requires clearance, overhead surveillance. a border patrol, sometimes during the patrol, including aircraft that can either detect i.e.d.'s or jam the signals that detonate i.e.d.'s using radio interference and then after the fact, whenever there is a blast, you have to call in a disposal team or a forensics team depending on whether there are more explosives present or if there are just craters. i.e.d.'s have the effect of limiting where patrols can go. the exact a high price of every mile. they slow everyone down because every ied and of being an
hourlong process of recovering the casualties, dragging the vehicle out of the crater, and investigating the blast site to determine what happened and who was responsible. it goes on and on and on to the point where the province of afghanistan is and ied-centric site. most of the soldiers to an attempt at countermeasures. what is left after you clear out the hamster wheel of the ied fight is a few people with a few days and months to spend trying to change attitudes and afghanistan and reform the country. >> the freelance video
journalist was embedded in march and april. it was his fourth trip to afghanistan. he is a regular contributor to cspan. you can watch this program and others like it on our web site if you go to c-span.org and click on video library. >> this week, the house will start on spending bills including homeland security and veterans affairs. a speech today on house republican freshmen allen west on defense spending. he will speak to the heritage foundation and you could see his comments live at 10:30 eastern on c-span 2. later in the day, often in other countries and how children can get medical care and those developing countries. the hearing is held by house foreign affairs subcommittee that starts live at 2:00 p.m.
eastern also on c-span 2. earlier today, president obama named army chief of staff general martin dempsey as his new chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. if confirmed, he will replace admiral mike mullen whose term ends this fall. from the white house rose garden, this is 10 minutes. in arlington, we will pause to show our devotion to those who gave their lives for our country. theirs was the ultimate sacrifice but it is one that every man and woman who wears
america's uniform is prepared to make. so that we can live free. the men and women of our armed forces are the best our nation has to offer and they deserve nothing but the absolute best in return. that includes leaders who will guide them, support their families with wisdom and strength and compassion. that is what i expect as commander in chief as we work to keep our nation secure and paramilitary the finest in the world. i found those qualities in leon panetta who announced last month as much as to succeed our outstanding secretary of defense of bob gates who i thank for joining us today. i found these qualities in the leaders who will complete our team at the pentagon and whom i am proud to announce today. general marchant dempsey as chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, admiral james winnifeld
as the vice chairman, and to succeed general dempsey, general ray odierno. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff is the principal military adviser to me and my team including the secretary of defense. since taking office, i have been very grateful for the leadership of the current chairman, admiral mike mullen, and the vice chair, general jim 'hoss' cartwright. these two men have served our country for decades and i look forward to paying tribute to their lives of service in the months ahead. today i will simply say that like president bush before me, i deeply valued the professional status and mike's personal integrity. our military forces have excelled from combat in apparat -- in iraq and afghanistan and relief efforts in haiti after the earthquake. he helped revitalize nato car reset our relations with russia, and steered our
relationship with pakistan and china. i believe history will also record mike mullen as the chairman who said what he believed was right and declared that no one in uniform should ever have to sacrifice their integrity to serve their country. i have also benefited enormously from the advice and counsel of hoss cartwright. he is their combination of technical experts from cyber to missile defense and strategic thinking whether it was updating our nuclear posture or paramilitary for 21st century missions. i will always be personally grateful to hoss for his friendship and partnership. as he completes four decades in service, you know, nation is more secure and military stronger because of his remarkable career. i know that michelle joins me in saluting debra mullen and sandy carper for their decades of extraordinary service, especially as champions of our
aspiring military families. with the advice and consent of the senate, it is our hope and expectation that leon panetta will soon take the reins as secretary of defense. general corporate's term ends this summer, admiral mullen's term ends this fall. i am announcing my choice for the successors today because it is essential this transition be seamless and we stay focused on the verge of national security challenges before us. i want to thank deputy secretary of defense bill lynn. with nearly 40 years in uniform, martin dempsey is one of our nation's most respected and, at best tested generals. in iraq, he led our soldiers against the brutal insurgency. having trained iraqi forces coming in as the nation must ultimately take responsibility for their own security. having served as acting commander of central command, he understands that in iraq and afghanistan, a security gains
must go hand in hand. just as he challenged the army to embrace new doctrine in texas, i expect him to push all our forces to continue adapting and be ready for the missions of today and tomorrow. i was proud to nominate marty as chief of staff and he only assume that position last month your tenure as chief may go down as one of the shortest in army history. it is your lifetime of accomplishment that brings us here today and i thank you for your willingness to take on this new assignment along with your wife and her three children, all of whom have served in the army. today, i want everyone of our men and women in uniform to hear the words you spoke to your soldiers on your first day as chief because it is our shared message to all who serve, especially our troops in harm's way. we will provide whatever it takes to achieve our objectives in the current fight.
as vice chairman, admiral sandy winnifeld will draw more than 30 years of service. under his command, fibers from the aircraft carrier enterprise pounded taliban positions in the weeks after 9/11 and his carefirst record played a critical role in our air operations over iraq. having served as a nato commander, sandy is well done to our allies. having served on the joint staff, he is known and trusted here at the white house. most recently as head of northern command, he has been responsible for the defense of our homeland and support to states and communities in times of crisis such as the recent tornadoes and floods along the mississippi. he supported our mexican partners in their fight against the cartels and their japanese allies in response to their nuclear emergency. sandino's that we have to be prepared for the full range of challenges. i thank you and your wife mary and her two sons for your
continued service. i have selected general dempsey and admiral winnifeld because of their record and potential as individuals and because the mitt will make an extraordinary team despite their competing loyalties to army and navy. between them, they bring deep experience in virtually every domain, land, air, space, see, cyber. both of them have the respect and trust of our troops on the front lines, our friends in congress, and allies and partners abroad. both of them have my full confidence. they both have something else -- for the first time, the chairman and vice-chairman will have the experience of leading combat operations in the years since 9/11. two moment in particular is the to this leadership. on the morning of 9/11, the enterprise was returning home from the persian gulf when word came of the attacks. rather than wait for orders, sandy took the initiative,
reversed course, and put his ship and aircraft within range of afghanistan by the next morning. that set the stage for the strikes that followed. if you years later, marty is first armored division was hurting out of iraq and he got new orders. he turned his divisional round, shipped it to new parts of iraq, and defeated and insurgent uprising. it was a remarkable maneuver that has entered the annals of military history. folks across the army are proud to see when they're on selected as chairman, i also know this means losing their new chief and a time of war and that is why for the next army chief of staff, i am nominating one of the army's most accomplished soldiers, and one of the tallest, general ray odierno. in three pivotal deployments to iraq, he commanded the troops that captured saddam hussein, a partner with general petraeus to help bring down the violence, and then transferred responsibility to iraqi forces
allowing us to remove some 100,000 american troops and and air combat mission. after years on the front lines, ray understands what the army must do to prevail in today's wars, to prepare for the future, and to preserve the readiness of the soldiers and families for the strength of america's families. we are fortunate that ray's dedication to our soldiers is shared by his wife linda and their family including their son tony, a combat veteran and advocate for his farrell -- fellow wooded warriors. i urge our friends in the senate to confirm these outstanding individuals as swiftly as possible. they are innovative, flexible, focused on the future, and deeply devoted to our troops and their families. general dempsey, admiral winnifeld, we have much to do.
from the feeding al-qaeda to protecting the libyan people, all this as we make difficult budget decisions while keeping our military the finest fighting force in the world. above all, as commander in chief, i will be looking to you and the rest of the joint chiefs for what i value most in my advisers -- you're honest, unvarnished advise them the full range of options especially when it comes to our most solemn obligation, protecting the lives of our brave men and women in uniform. we have a greater responsibility as we are reminded today we honor all those who sacrificed so we can enjoy the blessings of freedom. again, to marty, sandy, and ray as well as your families, thank you for your patriotic service and your readiness to leave once more. thank you very much, everybody. [no audio]
parrish. >> to join me for the invocation. oh, god -- [inaudible] make yourself known to us [inaudible] from our earliest beginnings, you have guided us through times of adversity and prosperity through periods of war and peace. by your on hand and on our behalf, you have shown yourself strong. among all the nations of the earth, america has been richly blessed in extraordinary ways. we turn to do today to remember with honor and respect our fellow citizens who have fought in various wars as members of our armed forces. the of these gallant americans died before our enemies guns and many of them died alone and many died in the fruits of their
youth. all of them served for the sake of future generations of americans whom they themselves would never know. many of these patriots are long dead by time in their dim the glory of their deeds or the sting of their loss. [inaudible] we remember them and honor their sacrifice. enable us to fully embrace the legacy of valor, duty, and terrifies of these fallen heroes, american heroes who caused our flag to fly high and with honor. power was to take up the fight for liberty for which they have given also that our watch, it may remain undimmed. this is our hope it is for this we pray, amen. >> please joined the united states marine band for the singing of our national anthem.
♪ [star spangled banner] o, say can you say by the dawn's early light what so proudly we hail to by the twilight's last gleaming. and the rockets' red glare the bombs bursting in air gave proof for the night -- through the night that our flag was still there. o, say does that star spangled banner yert wave. the land of the free and
the home of the brave ♪ [applause] >> please, be seated. be >> is and gentlemen, at more mullen. -- ladies and gentlemen, admiral mullen. >> mr. president, secretary gates, secretary shen said he and members of congress, distinguished guests, of veterans, fellow americans, and most especially, families of our fallen warriors. , welcome. if it is true that a nation defines itself by those it honors, then on this day and in this place let it be known that
america still defines itself as the most noble of nations. we have been represented and we have been defended and we have been made free, not solely by the mayor's strength of our ideals, but by the courage of young men and women who have been willing to die to preserve those ideals. soldiers in battle will tell you and they will mean that that they fight primarily for each other, that they are driven forward under fire by an earnest desire not to let each other down. they would not have been placed in that horror and they would not have been so ready to sacrifice themselves or enough for a deeper love of country, a fondness for home, and a heart beating with ardor for the lives and livelihood of their loved ones. that is, i believe, how they
would most like to be remembered. though to have fallen and are missing, not for the lives they lost but for the ones they lived, the ones they protected, the ones they saved. their legacy is not in their death. it is ultimately not in their sacrifice. it is in the sun rises and sunsets, the birthdays and holidays, the first dates and the firstborns, all the cherished moments they have made possible for the families they left behind. and for the thousands of their brothers and sisters in arms still out there on. and on patrol. their legacy is in the hopes that we harbor, the dreams we yet share, the laughter and tears, the fear, the joy and love -- all the things that make
us human back, all the things that make us a lot of. these our -- these are their gifts to us in life is their legacy. let us lift to the top. let us mourn, yes, they're passing, but let us also promise ourselves to do that which we can every day starting today to prove worthy of what our fallen have given us at so great a cost. let us look after their children, let eric -- let us bind up the wounds of their comments, let us remember that the best of what america represents to the world lies here in these and other hallowed places but that the best of who we are as americans lies in our own hearts and in our own actions. what we do to honor those who have rendered this last full measure of devotion. today, we most solemn remember.
tomorrow, we must stridently and generously live. those brave to sleep here ask for nothing more and we who survived and can demand of ourselves nothing less. god bless our fallen, the missing, and their families and god bless america. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen," america, the beautiful." ♪ >> o beautiful for spacious
>> ladies and gentlemen, secretary of defense gates. [applause] >> mr. president, veterans, active service members, families, welcome. for many americans, memorial day is a welcome respite from work, an extra day to spend at the beach or finish aaron's. we must never forget that it is foremost an occasion to reflect, to remember, and to honor the brave men and women who have fought and died for us. each year, we set aside a single day to reflect on the service of our armed forces and -- in generations past and present, a day where we must also honor the sacrifices of military family members who in recent years have borne the brunt of repeated deployments, long partings, and the fear of receiving the knock on the door with the worst of
all possible measures. news. as the troops pursue their mission, each and every day, they deserve our recognition, our respect, and are conscious gratitude. every soldier, sailor, airman, marine, and coastguardsman, wearing the uniform today and listed or re-and listed as serving in time of war -- the bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and the danger of like -- and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it. as i come to the end of my time as's, this will be my final opportunity to speak in this hallowed place and pay tribute to the fallen. it is up to us to be worthy of their sacrifice in the decisions we make, the priorities we set,
the support we provide to troops, veterans, and their families. for the rest of my life, i will keep these brave patriots and their loved ones in my heart and in my prayers. as i know does their commander in chief who has so steadfastly for supported those bearing the brunt of the fight, i have an honor to work at present obama for the past 2.5 years and to see the seriousness and palma's with which he weighs the security of the nation and the safety of the men and women who served. throughout, he has never shrunk from the tough decisions, the heavy burdens, and the responsibilities of command. it is my privilege and my honor to introduce the president of the united states. [applause] >> thank you.
thank you so much. please, be seated. thank you, secretary gates and thank you for your extraordinary service to our nation. i think that bob gates will go down as one of our finest secretaries of defense in our history. it has been an honor to serve with him. i also want to say -- [applause] i also want to say a word about admiral mullen. on a day when we are announcing his successor as chairman of the joint chiefs of staff and as he looks forward to well-deserved retirement later this year, admiral mullen, on behalf of all americans, we want to say thank you for your four decades of
service to this great country. [applause] [applause] we want to thank deborah mullen for her extraordinary service, also the commanding general of our military district of washington, mr. patrick hallanan, director of the cemetery and to the chaplain, thank you for your extraordinary service. [applause] it is a great privilege to return here to our national
sanctuary, this most hallowed ground, to commemorate memorial day with all of you. with americans who have come to pay their respects with members of our military and their families, with veterans to service -- whose service will never forget and always honor and with goldstar families whose loved ones rest all around us in the eternal peace. to those of you who mourn loss of a loved one today, my heart goes out to you. i love my daughter is more than anything in the world. i cannot imagine losing them. i cannot imagine losing a sister or brother or parents in war. the grace so many of you carry in your hearts is a grief i
cannot fully know. this day is that you and the fall and here is that you love d and it's a day that has meaning for all americans including me. it is one of my highest honors, it is my most solemn responsibility as president, to serve as commander in chief of one of the finest fighting force of the world has ever known. [applause] it is irresponsibility that carries special weight on this day. it carries special weight each time i meet with our goldstar families and i see the pride in their eyes but also the tears of pain that will never fully go away. each time i sit down at my desk
and sign a condolence letter to the families of fallen, sometimes a family will write me back and tell me about their daughter or son that they have lost or a friend will read the letter about what their battle body meant to them. i received one such letter from an army veteran named paul tarbucks. paul saw a photograph of me walking through section 60 where the cure is to fell in iraq and afghanistan lay. by a head stone marking the final resting place of staff sergeant joe finook. joe, he told me, was a friend of his. one of the best man is ever known, the kind of guy who could have the entire barrett and laughter, who was always there to lend a hand from being a volunteer coach to helping build a pregnant -- playground.
it was a moving letter and he closed with a few words about the hallowed cemetery where we are gathered here today. he wrote," the venerable warriors that slumber their new full well the risks associated with military service and felt pride in defending our democracy. the true lesson of arlington is that each headstone is that of a patriot. each has its own shares a story. thank you for letting me share with you this story about my friend, joe." the staff sergeant was a patriot like all the venerable warriors who late here and across this country and around the globe. each of them at honor to what it means to be a soldier, sailor,
airman, marine, and coastguardsman. heat is a link in an unbroken chain that stretches back -- each is a link in an unbroken chain that stretches back in our republican on this day we memorialize them all. we demoralize our first patriots, blacksmiths and farmers, slaves and free the md men who never knew the in the pen is the one with their lives. we memorialize the armies of man and women disguised as men, black and white, who fell and apple orchards and corn fields in a war that saved their union. we memorialize those who live their lives on the battlefields of our times, from normandy to milla, inchon to case on, bag dad to a helmund and in johnson city streets around the
world. what bonds is chained together across generations, this chain of honor and sacrifice is not only a common cause. but also a's cause spirit captured in a book of isaiah. it is a familiar burst melton made by a gold star parent. -- is a familiar verse mailed to me by gosar parent. "whom shall i send and who will go for rustie said here i am. send me." that is what we memorialize today. it is that spirit that says santa me, no matter the mission, send me no matter the rest, send
me no matter how large the sacrifice i am asked to make. the patriots will moralize today sacrificed not only all they had but all they would ever know. they gave of themselves until they had nothing more to give. it is natural when we lose someone we care about to ask why it had to beat them. why my son or my sister or my friend. why not me? these are questions that cannot be answered by us. on this day, we remember it is on our behalf that they gave their lives. we remember it as their courage, their on selfishness, their devotion to duty that has sustained this country for all its trial that will sustain us for all the trials to come.
we remember that the blessings we enjoy as americans can get a dear cost, that our very presence here today as free people in a free society bears testimony to their enduring legacy. our nation owes a debt to its fallen here is that we can never fully repay. we can honor their sacrifice and we must. we must honor it in our own laws by holding their memories close to our hearts and heating the example they set. we must honor it as a nation by keeping our sacred trust with all who wear america's uniform and the families who love them. by never giving up the search for those who have gone missing under our country's flag or held as prisoners of war, by serving
our patriots as well as they serve us from the moment they enter the military to the moment they leave it, to the moment they are laid to rest. that is how we can honor the sacrifice of those we lost. that is our obligation to american guardians. they are guardians like travis nimean, the son of a marine. he aspired to follow in his father's footsteps and was accepted by the uss naval academy. his roommate at the academy was a star athlete and born leader from a military family just like travis. the two quickly became best friends, like brothers. after graduation, they deployed at. travis went to iraq brendan to korea. on april 29, 2007, travis was
killed by sniper. ndan kept going. he dedicated his sealed train to the friend he met. he married the woman he loved and his tour in korea, he deployed to afghanistan. on september 21 of last year, brenda in his own life along with eight others in a helicopter crash. heartbroken yet filled with pride, the family's new only one way to honor their son's friendship. they move travelers from the cemetery in pennsylvania and buried them side by side here in .rlington, "warriors for freedom" reads the
epitheaph, brothers forever. the friendship between them reflects the meaning of memorial day. brotherhood, sacrifice, love of country. to is my fervent prayer that rely on to the memory of the fall by living out those ideals every day of our lives in the military and beyond. may god bless the souls of the venerable warriors we have lost and the country for which they died. [applause]
♪ ♪ >> have a seat for the benediction f/ . remember the wisdom you have learned and cling to that bad as could always as it evil, the other most, strengthens the faint hearted, but that the oppressed, defend and defender -- defend an honor god. above all, worship the lord, amen. >> ladies and gentlemen, the
that starts lot of 11:00 a.m. on c-span. while the senate is out of session this week, the house gavels in today at 2:00 p.m. for legislative business. they will have a bill sponsored by ways and means committee chairman dave camp that will raise the debt ceiling by $2.40 trillion. without the accompanying spending cuts. also expected are spending bills and military construction and veterans affairs as well as the homeland security department. you can follow the house live here on c-span. coming up next his "washington journal." we will have the associate editor of "the atlantic." he will look at the presidential candidates. bill ger