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Washington D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23), House Armed Services Chairman-Elect Mac Thornberry (TX-13), House Intelligence Chairman-Elect Devin Nunes (CA-22) and Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11) just returned from leading a congressional delegation to the Middle East to examine the unfolding campaign against ISIL and to confer with some of America’s close partners about regional security threats. The delegation traveled to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; Doha, Qatar; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; and Baghdad and Erbil, Iraq:

Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23):

“The United States is continually mindful of the significant challenges posed by ISIL and other radical extremists to our country and our allies in the Middle East. Congress remains concerned about our strategy to confront these challenges, and we plan to conduct vigorous oversight on the Administration’s policies in the weeks and months to come. America must remain resolute in confronting terrorists and other adversaries that mean to harm us and our partners. In our trip to the Middle East, we particularly appreciated the opportunity to personally express our gratitude to America’s men and women in uniform, intelligence professionals, and diplomats who are spending this holiday season away from their families in defense of our country. These brave and selfless Americans will remain in our thoughts and prayers.” 

House Armed Services Chairman-Elect Mac Thornberry (TX-13):  

“American troops are rising to the occasion against a dangerous enemy. Our allies appear ready to bear part of the load of defeating ISIL. Still, it is not clear that we have a strategy that can work.”

House Select Intelligence Chairman-Elect Devin Nunes (CA-22):

“The Middle East is facing the twin specter of the further expansion of ISIS and a possible Iranian nuclear bomb. The situation is critical, as these problems, if left unresolved, will have the most profound effects on the rest of the world.” 

House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11):

“In recent years, the United States has established valuable working partnerships with most nations in the greater Persian Gulf region. It is in the national security interest of the United States to ensure that these relationships remain active and vibrant. Our discussions with leaders and defense officials across the region were designed to be very helpful in this regard.”