Congressman Johnson, combat veteran, statement on Syria

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Washington, September 3, 2013 | comments

Today U.S. Congressman Sam Johnson (3rd Dist.-Texas) issued the following statement in light of current events on Syria.  A decorated combat veteran, Johnson earned two Silver Stars, two Legions of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, one Bronze Star with Valor, two Purple Hearts, four Air Medals, and three Outstanding Unit Awards.  The former Director of the Air Force school similar to Top Gun, Johnson spent nearly seven years as a Prisoner of War in Vietnam - more than half of that time in solitary confinement. 

"Like many Americans, I feel deeply concerned about the use of chemical weapons against innocent people - especially women and children - it is wrong. PERIOD.  That said, I view this upcoming debate not only as an elected U.S. Congressman but as a life-long fighter pilot, student of war, a combat veteran, and a Prisoner of War.  I strongly believe the Obama administration has failed to articulate a clear mission and path to victory.  Can they answer the simple question - What are our CLEAR objectives?

"As a military man, I follow the 'five paragraph order' of SMEAC - Situation, Mission, Execution, Administration and Logistics, and Command and Signal. 

“I want to know what is the situation, including who are our friends and who are our foes.

“I want to know the mission. Who will go in? What would they do? When would they go? And most importantly WHY would we send them?

“In execution, I want to know - what is our Commander in Chief's intent and what is his concept of operations?

“Under administration and logistics - commonly called beans, bullets and band aids - how will we supply our forces and give them the tools for victory to win this war?

“Under command and signal - how are we going to ensure our forces can successfully execute this mission and how will the President empower the commanders on the ground to do the right thing?

“The reality is that China and Russia will block us at every turn.  Americans have battle fatigue from Iraq and Afghanistan.  While some may consider this a simple case of a classic civil war, it is much more complex.  It's too hard to separate friend from foe and this will not turn out the way we want it to. 

“The Administration has to answer some tough and gripping questions before I will vote to put our military men and women in harms' way."


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