Rep. Walter Jones Asks Speaker Ryan To Allow a Debate on Getting Out of Afghanistan

September 8, 2017

The Honorable Paul Ryan
Speaker of the House
H-232, U.S. Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Speaker Ryan,

Mr. Speaker, members of Congress have written to Speaker Boehner and yourself over 13 times regarding the need for debate on the authorization of military force in Afghanistan. Despite repeated calls for action, nothing has happened. You, sir, are the leader of the House and you are responsible for bringing this debate to the floor.

This issue is more urgent now than ever. The president has not kept his campaign promises regarding Afghanistan, and is now increasing our military forces there. I, like many military families and taxpayers, am extremely frustrated!

I am angry because I have seen the waste, fraud, and abuse in that country for years. We are losing lives, and taxpayers are being taken advantage of. Here are a few recent headlines that show how:

  1. Afghanistan’s ‘ghost soldiers’ take scary toll on US taxpayers, says watchdog
  2. US cashmere plot: Pentagon’s $6m project to introduce rare goats to Afghanistan failed to stimulate economy
  3. And finally, the icing on the cake: US Pays $50 Mil for Luxury Cars, Weapons, Booze to Mentor Afghan Intel Officers

With all due respect, I believe that a Speaker of the House is complicit in the waste and abuse of taxpayers’ money when he or she denies a debate to the members who have taken an oath to uphold the Constitution. Item number three is one of the most telling examples I have seen of fraud and abuse, where a British firm, News Century Consulting, was awarded a $50 million contract to train Afghan intel officers, then instead used tax dollars to purchase Porsches, Aston Martins, and Bentleys. After 16 years, the waste, fraud, and corruption is more rampant today than ever. This is an insult to American taxpayers.

If the People’s House can afford 7 luxury cars for the executives of that firm, pay $6 million for 9 goats to boost the Afghan cashmere industry, and pay almost 100,000 Afghan ghost soldiers who don’t exist, how can we not hold a debate? At a time when hurricanes and wild fires are devastating this country, we need to use our tax dollars wisely. We must help out our own people first and foremost. For that reason, Mr. Speaker, I ask that you bring a debate on the war in Afghanistan to the House Floor NOW.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Walter B. Jones
Member of Congress (R-NC)

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