Pelosi and Reid Demand Adequate Armor and Equipment for Troops in Iraq

February 14, 2007
Press Release

Washington, DC--Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker Nancy Pelosi today sent the following letter to President Bush, urging him to take the necessary steps to ensure that the tens of thousands of soldiers being sent to escalate the war in Iraq have the armor and equipment needed to perform their mission and protect their lives. Unfortunately, reports suggest that the President is once again sending troops into Iraq without adequate supplies and support. Democrats, who join the overwhelming majority of Americans in opposing the President's escalation, believe the men and women serving bravely in Iraq should receive the equipment and support they need and deserve.

February 14, 2007

The President

The White House

Washington D.C., 20500

Dear Mr. President:

As you know, conditions in Iraq continue to deteriorate at a rapid pace.  The brunt of the problems in Iraq stem from long-standing sectarian differences, as well as the failure of Iraqi leaders to make the compromises necessary to reach a sustainable political settlement.  In such an environment, current and former senior military leaders have concluded that additional military force will not end the civil war in Iraq, it will only inflame it.

That is why we oppose your plan to deepen our military involvement in Iraq with the deployment of more than 20,000 additional troops. We regret that despite the broad bipartisan opposition to your plan in the Congress and in our nation, you have chosen to proceed with this unwise escalation.  With this latest troop surge, you have delivered exactly the wrong message to the Iraqi regime, namely that our military commitment is open-ended and there will be few if any consequences for their failure to make progress toward a national political reconciliation.

As Iraqi leaders bicker, the violence in Iraq continues to inflict casualties on our troops at unacceptably high rates.  Equally disturbing is the fact that thousands of the new troops you are sending to Iraq as well as those already there will apparently not have the armor and equipment they need to perform the mission and reduce the likelihood of casualties.

According to recent news reports, the Army lacks thousands of advanced armor kits for Humvees that could protect against roadside bombs, the cause of 70% of American casualties in Iraq.  In addition, we understand that existing shortages of trucks and other crucial equipment such as jamming devices, radios and other gear will only be exacerbated by the troop surge.  Lodging and logistical support is also reportedly in short supply for the newly deployed forces.  We hope these reports are wrong, but we suspect they are not.

Mr. President, it is wrong to deploy troops to the Iraqi theater until they have the up-armored Humvees, equipment, lodging, training and other support required to carry out their mission.  We hope you will work with us to make sure that they do.  Our troops and their families deserve nothing less.

Thank you for your consideration of our views on this important matter.

 

Sincerely,

Harry Reid

Senate Majority Leader

Nancy Pelosi

Speaker of the House

 

February 14, 2007

The President

The White House

Washington D.C., 20500

Dear Mr. President:

As you know, conditions in Iraq continue to deteriorate at a rapid pace.  The brunt of the problems in Iraq stem from long-standing sectarian differences, as well as the failure of Iraqi leaders to make the compromises necessary to reach a sustainable political settlement.  In such an environment, current and former senior military leaders have concluded that additional military force will not end the civil war in Iraq, it will only inflame it.

That is why we oppose your plan to deepen our military involvement in Iraq with the deployment of more than 20,000 additional troops. We regret that despite the broad bipartisan opposition to your plan in the Congress and in our nation, you have chosen to proceed with this unwise escalation.  With this latest troop surge, you have delivered exactly the wrong message to the Iraqi regime, namely that our military commitment is open-ended and there will be few if any consequences for their failure to make progress toward a national political reconciliation.

As Iraqi leaders bicker, the violence in Iraq continues to inflict casualties on our troops at unacceptably high rates.  Equally disturbing is the fact that thousands of the new troops you are sending to Iraq as well as those already there will apparently not have the armor and equipment they need to perform the mission and reduce the likelihood of casualties.

According to recent news reports, the Army lacks thousands of advanced armor kits for Humvees that could protect against roadside bombs, the cause of 70% of American casualties in Iraq.  In addition, we understand that existing shortages of trucks and other crucial equipment such as jamming devices, radios and other gear will only be exacerbated by the troop surge.  Lodging and logistical support is also reportedly in short supply for the newly deployed forces.  We hope these reports are wrong, but we suspect they are not.

Mr. President, it is wrong to deploy troops to the Iraqi theater until they have the up-armored Humvees, equipment, lodging, training and other support required to carry out their mission.  We hope you will work with us to make sure that they do.  Our troops and their families deserve nothing less.

Thank you for your consideration of our views on this important matter.

 

Sincerely,

Harry Reid

Senate Majority Leader

Nancy Pelosi

Speaker of the House

February 14, 2007

The President

The White House

Washington D.C., 20500

Dear Mr. President:

As you know, conditions in Iraq continue to deteriorate at a rapid pace.  The brunt of the problems in Iraq stem from long-standing sectarian differences, as well as the failure of Iraqi leaders to make the compromises necessary to reach a sustainable political settlement.  In such an environment, current and former senior military leaders have concluded that additional military force will not end the civil war in Iraq, it will only inflame it.

That is why we oppose your plan to deepen our military involvement in Iraq with the deployment of more than 20,000 additional troops. We regret that despite the broad bipartisan opposition to your plan in the Congress and in our nation, you have chosen to proceed with this unwise escalation.  With this latest troop surge, you have delivered exactly the wrong message to the Iraqi regime, namely that our military commitment is open-ended and there will be few if any consequences for their failure to make progress toward a national political reconciliation.

As Iraqi leaders bicker, the violence in Iraq continues to inflict casualties on our troops at unacceptably high rates.  Equally disturbing is the fact that thousands of the new troops you are sending to Iraq as well as those already there will apparently not have the armor and equipment they need to perform the mission and reduce the likelihood of casualties.

According to recent news reports, the Army lacks thousands of advanced armor kits for Humvees that could protect against roadside bombs, the cause of 70% of American casualties in Iraq.  In addition, we understand that existing shortages of trucks and other crucial equipment such as jamming devices, radios and other gear will only be exacerbated by the troop surge.  Lodging and logistical support is also reportedly in short supply for the newly deployed forces.  We hope these reports are wrong, but we suspect they are not.

Mr. President, it is wrong to deploy troops to the Iraqi theater until they have the up-armored Humvees, equipment, lodging, training and other support required to carry out their mission.  We hope you will work with us to make sure that they do.  Our troops and their families deserve nothing less.

Thank you for your consideration of our views on this important matter.

 

Sincerely,

Harry Reid

Senate Majority Leader

Nancy Pelosi

Speaker of the House