The Attacks in Paris
‘We, the 100 men and women of the United States Senate, send our sincere condolences to the people of France. From across the Atlantic, Americans send condolences to the victims, to their families, and to first responders.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following remarks on the Senate floor regarding the terrorist attacks in Paris:
“Allow me to express what I know each of my colleagues feels today.
“We, the 100 men and women of the United States Senate, send our sincere condolences to the people of France. From across the Atlantic, Americans send condolences to the victims, to their families, and to first responders.
“We understand the pain and the loss that accompany a terrorist attack.
“Some feel it in the most personal way.
“Some never come home.
“But everyone shares in the loss.
“In our case, many shared in the response and the recovery too.
“In a dark hour, we were reminded of the things that bound us together. I hope you will feel something similar take hold in your terrible hour as well.
“We’ve already seen rays of light begin to shine through the darkness.
“We even saw it last Friday.
“Then, as Paris reeled, a soft hum emanated from a tunnel.
“‘March,’ came the echo in French. ‘March on.’
“Enemies in history and rivals on the soccer pitch had united around a common humanity. Dazed, disoriented, but alive, French and German fans marched through the tunnels together.
“Some put defiance to verse.
“‘Against us,’ they sang. ‘Tyranny has unfurled its bloody banner.’
“And indeed, that night it had.
“A song sung so many times before came alive with new meaning that horrible night. Many knew it as France’s national anthem. But that night, it became an aria for their sorrow and an ode to their fraternity.
“We heard it here from an ocean away. We add our voices to the harmony now.
“We know that these attacks were directed not just at the victims we mourn today, but also at modernity and the free world.
“President Obama has called ISIL the ‘face of evil.’ It clearly presents a challenge to NATO, to our moderate Sunni allies, and to the United States. But it’s also shown that it can attack innocent victims in the West too — right where they live. These terrorist have declared their intention to do so again and again.
“We know that trying to contain ISIL’s conventional advance as an operational concept has proven insufficient in the face of determined terrorist attacks. But we also know something else.
“With resolve and determination ISIL can be defeated.
“It won’t be easy. It won’t come quickly or without cost. But we also have no other option.
“I look forward to engaging with President Obama to determine his strategy and the tools that will be necessary to achieve it.
“We’re looking forward to hearing the President’s proposed strategy when Senators are briefed by the White House this week.
“Whatever he does though, I encourage him to work cooperatively with both parties on the way forward.
“This is a challenge that’s going to require all of our efforts to confront, and it’s a discussion that will be ongoing.
“But today is a time to remember and to reflect.
“We have the people of France in our thoughts today.
“That’s true here in the Senate, and that’s true across our country.”
Related Issues: War on Terror, ISIL