Burr: Gitmo, Agent Orange, and Sunday Shows

Senator Richard Burr
2015-01-16 14:56:40
Richard Burr, US Senator North Carolina This week I introduced legislation with Senators Ayotte, McCain, and Graham that would restrict transfers of detainees from Guantanamo Bay in order to best protect Americans and our national security.� The Detaining Terrorists to Protect America Act of 2015 would suspend international transfers of high and medium risk detainees, prohibit transfers of Guantanamo detainees to Yemen, extend the current prohibition on transfers to the U.S., and increase transparency regarding risk assessments of the remaining Guantanamo detainees. Instead of working with Congress to develop common-sense policies to enable our national security personnel to detain and interrogate terrorists, this Administration continues to irresponsibly release detainees from Guantanamo Bay. Many of these detainees have returned to the battlefields from which they came and are looking for ways to kill Americans and our allies. The detainees that remain at Guantanamo are the worst of the worst, and their continued release will only further damage our national security.� Safety is my utmost concern, and a two year prohibition on transferring the detainees with the highest risk should give Congress and the Administration time to develop a long-term plan for keeping this country safe. �You can read more about this legislation here [link 1].� [image = burr.enews.senate.gov//images/user_images/Screen Shot 2015-01-13 at 3_39_36 PM.png] [link 2] Click here to watch my comments from the press conference on *The Detaining Terrorists to Protect America Act of 2015* [link 3] Friday of last week, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published a report which examined the potential that C-123 aircraft flown and maintained by Air Force Reserve crews from 1972 to 1982 were contaminated by Agent Orange residue from their service in Vietnam and that those crews and maintainers were likely exposed to unsafe levels of Agent Orange dioxin. The IOM�s report concurs with earlier findings from the CDC, which found that the contamination during that ten year period would have posed a significantly higher health risk for Air Force Reserve personnel. In 2012, I asked the VA Inspector General to take a close look at whether or not VA had an unwritten policy of �blanket denial� for the C-123 veterans. �The VA Secretary assured me there was no such policy; however, with the exception of one veteran who was granted disability in 2013, no other veteran has been approved without their case being decided by the Board of Veterans� Appeals. These delays from VA have gone on long enough. �Instead of ignoring widely accepted science for three years and then commissioning an expensive study of that well founded science, the VA could have been caring for these veterans. They now have what they need to start helping these veterans.� Read IOM�s report here [link 4]. Last Sunday, I joined George Stephanopoulos on �This Week� [link 5]to discuss the attack on Paris and its implications for the international community. �The biggest takeaway: It doesn�t matter which terrorist group we insert into the blank, they�re out to kill innocent people. �Whether it happens in Paris, London, or New York, we�ve got to collectively do our best to make sure we thwart those attacks. I also joined Jake Tapper on �The Lead� [link 6]Tuesday evening. Click below to watch videos of both appearances.� [image = burr.enews.senate.gov//images/user_images/ThisWeekGeorge.png] [link 7] [image = burr.enews.senate.gov//images/user_images/thelead.jpg] [link 8] Finally, I�ll be joining CNN�s Sunday morning show �State of the Union� [link 9]at 9am this week � check your local listings and tune in.� On Monday, I�ll be on CNN�s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer [link 10]on at 6pm and on Fox Business's Lou Dobbs Tonight [link 11] at 7pm. ������� Sincerely, [image = burr.enews.senate.gov//images/user_images/sig_block.gif] ������� Richard Burr [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/common/images/sn-facebook-like.png] [link 12] [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/common/images/sn-linkedin-share.png] [link 13] [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/common/images/sn-twitter-tweet.png] [link 14] Tell a Friend* Survey/Question [survey] E-mail Updates* *Yes, please periodically send me e-mail updates.** [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/images/clickherebtn.gif] [link 15] *By subscribing to my e-mail updates, you are authorizing me to send regular e-mail updates from my office to your e-mail account. [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/images/stay_connected.gif] [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/images/icon-ft-twitter.png] [link 16] �� [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/images/icon-ft-youtube.png] [link 17]�� [image = burr.enews.senate.gov/images/icon-ft-fb.png] [link 18]
January 16, 2015

This week I introduced legislation with Senators Ayotte, McCain, and Graham that would restrict transfers of detainees from Guantanamo Bay in order to best protect Americans and our national security.  The Detaining Terrorists to Protect America Act of 2015 would suspend international transfers of high and medium risk detainees, prohibit transfers of Guantanamo detainees to Yemen, extend the current prohibition on transfers to the U.S., and increase transparency regarding risk assessments of the remaining Guantanamo detainees.

Instead of working with Congress to develop common-sense policies to enable our national security personnel to detain and interrogate terrorists, this Administration continues to irresponsibly release detainees from Guantanamo Bay. Many of these detainees have returned to the battlefields from which they came and are looking for ways to kill Americans and our allies. The detainees that remain at Guantanamo are the worst of the worst, and their continued release will only further damage our national security.  Safety is my utmost concern, and a two year prohibition on transferring the detainees with the highest risk should give Congress and the Administration time to develop a long-term plan for keeping this country safe.  You can read more about this legislation

The Detaining Terrorists to Protect America Act of 2015

Friday of last week, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published a report which examined the potential that C-123 aircraft flown and maintained by Air Force Reserve crews from 1972 to 1982 were contaminated by Agent Orange residue from their service in Vietnam and that those crews and maintainers were likely exposed to unsafe levels of Agent Orange dioxin.

The IOM�s report concurs with earlier findings from the CDC, which found that the contamination during that ten year period would have posed a significantly higher health risk for Air Force Reserve personnel.

In 2012, I asked the VA Inspector General to take a close look at whether or not VA had an unwritten policy of �blanket denial� for the C-123 veterans.  The VA Secretary assured me there was no such policy; however, with the exception of one veteran who was granted disability in 2013, no other veteran has been approved without their case being decided by the Board of Veterans� Appeals.

These delays from VA have gone on long enough.  Instead of ignoring widely accepted science for three years and then commissioning an expensive study of that well founded science, the VA could have been caring for these veterans. They now have what they need to start helping these veterans.  Read IOM�s report Last Sunday, to discuss the attack on Paris and its implications for the international community.  The biggest takeaway: It doesn�t matter which terrorist group we insert into the blank, they�re out to kill innocent people.  Whether it happens in Paris, London, or New York, we�ve got to collectively do our best to make sure we thwart those attacks.

ITuesday evening. Click below to watch videos of both appearances. 

Finally, I�ll be joining at 9am this week � check your local listings and tune in.  On Monday, I�ll be on on at 6pm and on at 7pm.

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