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WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement this morning in response to the release of the latest National Intelligence Estimate:
"The conclusion of this latest NIE that al-Qaeda has reconstituted and is gaining in strength is deeply disturbing and raises serious questions about this Administration’s anti-terror strategy, as well as its continued insistence that the war in Iraq is the central front in the war on terror. One cannot help but ask: Why didn’t we continue to press the fight and effectively crush al-Qaeda and the Taliban when we had them on the run in Afghanistan in the months after 9/11? Instead, we have diverted our attention and precious military resources to Iraq, where the Administration seems determined to compound its many errors over the last four and one-half years by stubbornly refusing to acknowledge that the fight against al-Qaeda is primarily in the hills and valleys near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.
"I can only hope this NIE serves as a wakeup call to the Administration, and that it chooses to join Congressional Democrats and a growing number of Republicans who support a responsible redeployment of American forces from Iraq. We can and must win the war terror. The best way to do that is to focus our resources on the greatest danger, rather than force our military to mediate a sectarian war in Iraq."