January 9th, 2010
06:54 AM ET
13 years ago

King: 'We are a nation at war'

Rep. Peter King delivered the GOP's weekly address this week. Full text as released by the Republican National Committee:

"Hi, I'm Republican Congressman Pete King, I serve as the Ranking Member on the House Homeland Security Committee and I'm also a member of the House Intelligence Committee. I have the privilege to represent New York's Third Congressional District, on Long Island in the suburbs of New York City.

"Two weeks ago, the terrorist plot to bring down Northwest Airlines Flight 253 in the skies over Detroit was thwarted by a combination of luck and vigilance. But as President Obama has rightly said, it should never have even gotten to that point. Last year, this terrorist's father, a widely respected member of his community, went to our embassy in Nigeria and shared his concerns that his son was becoming a radical jihadist. That should have been more than enough to trigger a red flag that would prevent this terrorist from ever setting foot on a plane bound for the U.S with explosives.

"Both parties recognize the need for answers, so bureaucratic reviews will take place and congressional hearings will be held. And while that's all well and good, this is about much more than whether the no-fly list gets longer or it takes more time to get through the security line at the airport.

"This is about whether we've learned our lesson. Terrorists still have innocent people in their sights and the will to murder them. They are always working on the next attack, refining their methods, searching the globe for new recruits. In other words, September 11th is not ancient history – it's all too real.

"So, the people in my community certainly get it. American families get it. And now it's time for the Administration in Washington to stop sending mixed messages and get it too.

"One of the first things we need to do is pass the Keep Terrorists Out of America Act, a common-sense bill Republicans have proposed to prevent terrorists from being brought on to our soil. This bill would help stop the misguided plan to put Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and other 9/11 terrorists on trial in downtown Manhattan. It's an enormous, unnecessary risk, as is housing terrorists at the proposed 'Gitmo North' facility near Chicago.

"There's a good reason why the government has had such a hard time transferring these terrorist detainees to other countries. They are the worst of the worst. No one should want them. That's why we put in place a process by which these terrorists should be held and tried – as enemy combatants, by military commissions.

"The Keep Terrorists Out of America Act will also help to ensure that we're treating terrorism as what it is – a war crime, not a law enforcement issue. We can't gather the intelligence we need to foil future attacks if we are blindly granting terrorists the right to remain silent. But for some reason, we've already done that with the terrorist who tried to bring down Flight 253.

"We're a nation at war, and we should act like it. We need to pull together, remain vigilant, and send a clear signal – both to our friends and our enemies – that this government will stop at nothing to protect our homeland. That's how America sets an example for the world.

"Thank you for listening."

Filed under: GOP weekly address • Peter King
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. El Kababa

    Attention suckers: We are not at war. Since 9/11, terrorists have killed about 10,000 Americans. Americans have killed about 100,000 Americans in barroom brawls, drug deals, botche burglaries, and family feuds during the same time. Flu has killed more than that. Alcohol has killed more than the flu. Tobacco has killed more than alcohol.

    Republican leaders go to bed every night praying for a terrorist attack on America, because they know how to translate that attack into votes. Conservatives are great at waving the flag and telling you how Obama doesn't care if a terrorist rapes your grandmother.

    We have to tend to the terrorist problem, but it is a criminal problem. Terrorism is organized crime.

    We are wasting a fortune on underpants x-ray machines when we could save more American lives with flu vaccines and seat belts.

    We have to prioritize.

    January 9, 2010 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  2. Sam

    The adults, who have credentials (Past heads of the CIA, HLS (2), National Intelligence, WH Cof S, 9/11 committee, etc), have been more objective and much less partisan/political/biased. Let's pay attention to these who really know and ignore those who want to play politics..

    January 9, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  3. D. Tree

    The Republicans are trying to shift the public's attention to terrorism, so they can go back to using fear to win elections.

    January 9, 2010 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  4. Change

    The Obama administration has brought us Change. We are now more vunerable then we were under the previous President. We are now considering bringing our enemies into our country, giving them a trial in civilian courts and affording them the same rights that they wish to tear away from us. We are now seeing our enemies attacking us on our home soil. We are in debit like never before and on the verge of becoming a servant to countries like China.

    Yes Obama has brought us Change but it not Change for the Good.

    January 9, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  5. Robin

    Why are we paying attention, by giving a platform, to these people who consistently lie. This is the same person who lied and said that Pres. Obama did not and does not use the words terror and terrorism. He even lied and said he never used the words at his speech at West Point when video and transcripts are so easily available to prove that he is a liar (I know that's a harsh word but it applies) that he mentioned terror several times.

    This is why CNN and other so called MSM are not considered newsworthy any more. When you give a platform to people who lie as King does your credibility is lost.

    January 9, 2010 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  6. Donkey Party

    The GOP / Conservative party are the biggest bunch of sissy cowards the world has ever seen. This "resolution" proves it. It also defines their blatant hypocrisy. Amazing that ignorant Americans think the Right keeps them safe.

    January 9, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  7. annie s

    Nothing but fear mongering. These criminal acts – and that's exactly what they are – have always existed throughout the world and always will. To give into that fear is to give the perpetrators exactly what they want. Personally, I'm no more afraid of a terrorist attack than I am of a random mugging – and I'm certainly not afraid to have these bad guys tried in American courts and housed in American prisons.

    January 9, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  8. El Ilegal

    Wow! All I really care about is being legalized as an American!! Yeah, Obama!!

    January 9, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  9. Michael - Portage, Mi

    No true American stands up for his country in a time of war by playing partisan blame games. Therefore, this guy and his ilk fail the "true American" test.

    January 9, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  10. Joe Sr

    Rep King, you are a disgrace to your party and to America.......Repubs LOVE to use FEAR.....Must be an election year

    January 9, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  11. Republicans are the American Taliban

    The Republican Taliban bringing terror to America...

    January 9, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  12. Diz30143

    When the Muslim extremists start attacking America on a daily basis on our soil.............I guarantee you the liberals will be crying while the Convertives who want to protect our people and our land are the ones standing up for our country. P.S. D.Tree, Sam, El Kababa.....will probably be 3 of the first ones to run and hide!

    January 9, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  13. Allen

    This is not Obama's fault. He's not the one analyzing the data. If anyone dropped the ball it's the partisans (yes, they are partisan) who work in the pentagon. All they have to do is gloss over a few pieces of data to embarrass a president they don't like. Remember all those "terrorist threats" we heard about immediately preceeding the 2004 presidential election? Once Bush was elected we stopped hearing about those. Interesting.

    People want to harm the United States because they are weak-minded followers who refuse to take responsibilty to for the sad state of their own lives. Bush exacerbated this and now we are paying the price. Only Dick Cheney and his terrorist allies are happy.

    January 9, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  14. VON BISMARK -Vienna

    The prisoners should remaim in Gitmo where they can be tortured with impunity. The freedom these rethugs prone is not the freedom in a democratic dispensation where the rule of law is sacrosant.We must torture so as to appear strong after executing Japanese for the same crime.

    January 9, 2010 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  15. Donkey Party

    Anyone that supports this obviously doesn't support Democracy. The terrorists have succeeded in instilling fear on the Right, they are running around peeing all over themselves in fright.

    January 9, 2010 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  16. mockingbird

    Why in the world do we have to keep saying that we, as a nation, are "at war" in order to catch criminals who practice terrorism? At war with whom? Terrorism? Terrorism is a tactic, not a country or a social group. Every rational human being on the planet is always "at war" with terrorism, in a certain sense.

    The Irish Republican Army practiced terrorism on the British government for years, and they never felt the need to say they were "at war" with Ireland. How often do you hear the Israelis say publicly that they're "at war?" What would constantly bringing that up change - other than granting us a government license to make decisions based upon fear, panic, and the reduction of our own freedom - which is exactly the GOAL of teerrorism?

    We went to war with the wrong country in Iraq, at the BEHEST of some of these GOP warmongers. WE need to increase our vigilance and targeting of terrorists - notr our jingoism and chest-thumping.

    January 9, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  17. Peter King is slime

    I have watch congressman King's non stop lies over the last two weeks. Terrorists attacked us over a dozen times after 9-11 under Bush and this liar had no problem with it.

    I am a God fearing Christian, and I worship accordingly. It is clear to me that this moron is a Taliban fearing, Muslim fearing, person who worships accordingly.

    January 9, 2010 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  18. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    Peter King has been at war with himself for twenty years.

    January 9, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  19. catmomtx

    Oh, for goodness sakes. King is aiding and abetting the terrorists. WHY do you people insist on allowing the terrorists to win. Do you people even know what terrorism is? It is making you afraid, making you change the way you live because you are afraid. King, Hoekstra and all the other Republicans are exploiting your fear. They are acting like terrorists.

    What is the point of constantly using the word terrorism? Will using that word make it go away? will it make a difference? NO it will only make people scared and gullible and opened up to manipulation. Have King and other Republicans offered any solutions? What would they be doing? After the failed Christmas day bombing, what would they have done? Why did everyone praise Bush under the same circumstances but somehow, President Obama is being vilified? Obama spoke out after THREE days, Bush TEN but you vilify Obama. Reid was tried, convicted and sentenced in Federal Court but you people vilify Obama for doing the same. Yeah, we see who is a danger to our country and it isn't President Obama. Thanks Mr. King for showing how you hate America.

    January 9, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |