Providing national security is a fundamental duty of the federal government. Secure borders and a well equipped U.S. military are the foundations of our national security. I am particularly proud of the heroic service of our military men and women and their families, especially over the last ten years in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Proper diplomacy and development are also important to our national defense and international security.
Our country is strengthened as well by maintaining good relationships with other nations, promoting fundamental human rights, and increasing international stability. As a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee with special responsibilities for the Middle East and as co-founder of the House Nuclear Security Caucus, protecting our national security has been among my top priorities.
As I have often said, international security is not America’s problem alone; the community of responsible nations must also do its share of the difficult lifting. A 21st century national security framework must converge defense, diplomacy and development to protect fragile states, achieve stable rule of law and enhance communication and economic opportunity. One of the most difficult challenges comes from Iran as it seeks nuclear weapons capability. Should this outcome be achieved, it will be a geo-political game changer in the volatile Middle East. The Iranian leader’s incendiary style and apocalyptic rhetoric–and the brutality toward his own countrymen who seek just governmental reform–indicates the seriousness of the situation.
I am also a member of the House Democracy Partnership which seeks to provide technical assistance to other countries which are trying to develop strong governing institutions based upon the principles of self-determination. Many people around the world are seeking better governance capability for the well-being of their societies and the good of their people. They understand America’s example