(Senate - October 01, 2004)

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[Pages S10254-S10256]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []

                            MORNING BUSINESS

  Mr. FRIST. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that there be a 
period for morning business with Senators permitted to speak for up to 
10 minutes each.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. STEVENS. Mr. President, Tuesday, September 14, was National POW/
MIA Recognition Day. American citizens in towns and communities all 
across our Nation commemorated this occasion by pausing to remember 
American prisoners of war, those who continue to be missing, and their 
  A national observance was held on the River Parade Field at the 
Pentagon with an honor guard parade consisting of units from the Army, 
Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard. Guests included the 
families of former POWs and MIAs and representatives of veterans' 
  The guest of honor for this occasion was our distinguished colleague 
and our dear friend, Senator Dan Inouye of Hawaii. Senator Inouye spoke 
eloquently about the significance of this remembrance as did Gen 
Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Deputy 
Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz.
  Secretary Wolfowitz's statement included an introduction of Senator 
Inouye that captured the life and legacy of this great patriot. The 
eloquent remarks of General Myers, Secretary Wolfowitz and Senator 
Inouye deserve the attention of the Senate. I ask unanimous consent 
that the speeches of General Myers, Dr. Wolfowitz and Senator Inouye be 
printed in the Record.
  There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in 
the Record, as follows:

 Remarks by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Richard B. 
               Myers, at POW/MIA Recognition Day Ceremony

       Thank you so much for joining us as we remember our 
     Prisoners of War and those still Missing in Action.
       A special thanks Senator for joining us today. In my view, 
     Senator Inouye embodies our nation's commitment to service 
     and sacrifice--from his decorated military service during 
     World War II to his dedicated public service over the last 40 
     years. Sir, thank you so much for your support of our 
     military family and for taking the time to be with us today.
       This past Saturday, as you know, marked the 3-year 
     anniversary of September 11 terrorist attacks. The tragedies 
     of that day, as well as our ongoing combat operations in the 
     War on Terrorism, serve as a solemn reminder that service and 
     sacrifice are really a part of our lives.
       Those who take the oath of office, and put on our Nation's 
     uniform, make a commitment to put the interests of others 
     ahead of their own, and set aside their personal safety and 
     comfort for the well being of others. They become part of our 
     military family, dedicated to protecting all our families.
       Today we remember those who embraced this quality to the 
     fullest. When one of our own is killed in action, taken 
     prisoner or missing, we lose a member of our military family. 
     Certainly, I've experienced the loss of friends and squadron 
     mates during my time in Vietnam and in the years since. I 
     expect and know most of you here have experienced similar 
     pain and similar grief.
       When one of our own becomes a POW or is missing, their 
     families, both the immediate family and the larger military 
     family, endure the tragic pain of not knowing where they are 
     or if they will ever return.
       So it is for both the immediate family, and our larger 
     military family, that today's ceremony carries really so much 
     meaning. We gather to formally remember our loved ones and 
     their service, and to renew our pledge that we shall never, 
     never forget them.
       The character of our Nation, in many respects, is reflected 
     in the character of those who serve. Those we remember today 
     reflect the very best of our Nation.
       Our Deputy Secretary of Defense is also passionate about 
     the welfare of our servicemen and women, and their families. 
     And there is no one who fights harder on their behalf. He's 
     demonstrated a selfless commitment to the ideals of freedom 
     and democracy as Assistant Secretary of State, as our U.S. 
     Ambassador to Indonesia, and teaching at some of our Nation's 
     finest institutions.
       It's a privilege and an honor to introduce our Deputy 
     Secretary of Defense, the Honorable Paul Wolfowitz.

Remarks of Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz--Introduction of 
     Senator Daniel Inouye at the National POW/MIA Recognition Day

       Thank you, General Myers, for those inspiring words. And 
     thank you for your strong leadership and faithful service to 
     our country.
       We are joined today by more than a few others who have 
     served our nation: members of America's magnificent Armed 
     Forces, and

[[Page S10255]]

     many of our brave veterans, including the many former POWs 
     who join us, and our special guest, Senator Dan Inouye.
       I want to take this occasion to say thank you to Jerry 
     Jennings, the President's point man for accounting for 
     America's missing; and the dedicated men and women on his 
     team. The recovery and return of our missing Americans can 
     mean years of painstaking effort. And some 600 men and women, 
     both military and civilians, around the world take part in 
     everything from diplomatic negotiations and field operations 
     to forensic analysis. They are tireless and dedicated. And 
     through their latest efforts, the remains of fallen Americans 
     have just been recovered in North Korea and are now headed 
       A special welcome to those of you who serve as leaders and 
     volunteers of POW/MIA family groups. We appreciate your 
     tireless devotion in keeping the home fires burning for those 
     Americans still missing or unaccounted for. Your devotion to 
     loved ones who have yet to return helps our nation to honor 
     its commitment to those we must never forget.
       We're here today to honor your commitment and your courage.
       We're here to remember and honor the courage of America's 
     POW's and missing countrymen who risked everything, facing 
     the worst of war to preserve the best of America.
       And we are here--above all--to reaffirm our commitment to 
     keep the pledge President Bush has made to achieve ``the 
     fullest possible accounting of our prisoners of war and those 
     missing in action.'' The brave men and women who serve 
     today--whether in Afghanistan or in Iraq or in other theaters 
     of the war on terrorism--can do so with the full confidence 
     that if they are captured, become missing or fall in battle, 
     this nation will spare no effort to bring them home. That, 
     too, is our solemn pledge. However long it takes, whatever it 
     takes, whatever the cost.''
       As General Myers reminded us, on Saturday, we observed the 
     third anniversary of September 11th. I was with Secretary 
     Rumsfeld and General Pete Pace and family members in 
     Arlington Cemetery. We'd gathered at the burial spot for 
     the Americans who died at their Pentagon posts just a few 
     hundred yards away on that horrific day.
       The serene beauty of their final resting place reminded us 
     all that Americans are reluctant warriors. But, as Secretary 
     Rumsfeld said, that September 11th three years ago was 
     America's call to arms. And as they've always done, brave 
     Americans have once again taken up arms to defend our safety, 
     our security and our liberty.
       I recently met one young soldier who was wounded grievously 
     in Iraq. Yet, he described how ravaged Iraq had been before 
     the Americans arrived, and how much good he had been able to 
     do in the time he'd been there. Then, he put his own enormous 
     sacrifice into this selfless context. He said: We're fighting 
     for everything we believe in.'' He said: ``Something had to 
     be done.''
       We have with us today a man who embodies that same love for 
     America, that same selfless devotion to preserve what America 
     stands for. As a soldier and a senator, he has spent a 
     lifetime fighting for everything America believes in. When 
     something had to be done, he was there to do it. Ladies and 
     gentlemen, Daniel Inouye is a true American hero.
       On December 7, 1941, 17-year-old Dan Inouye stood beside 
     his father outside their home in Honolulu, watching as dive-
     bombers attacked Pearl Harbor. As Japanese Americans, father 
     and son were especially pained and stunned--as the Senator 
     would later recall, they'd worked so hard to be good 
     Americans. Dan jumped on his bicycle and rushed to the Red 
     Cross station, where he taught first aid. There were so many 
     injuries, it would be five days before he would return home.
       Dan Inouye wanted to do more. But because he was of 
     Japanese descent, he was classified as 4-C--meaning he was 
     considered a--quote--``enemy alien.'' That made him--and all 
     Japanese-Americans--ineligible for the draft.
       Dan Inouye wasn't discouraged by the pain of this 
     prejudice. Instead, he signed petitions that went to the 
     President, asking for the opportunity to serve. And in the 
     meantime, he went to medical school.
       In 1942, President Roosevelt authorized a combat team of 
     Japanese American volunteers. Senator Inouye has recalled 
     what Franklin Roosevelt said when he authorized the unit. It 
     was a phrase, the Senator has said, ``that meant a lot to the 
     men of the regiment: `Americanism is not and has never been a 
     matter of race or color,' said FDR. `Americanism is a matter 
     of mind and heart.' '' And Dan Inouye proved the truth in 
     those words. He immediately quit medical school to enlist in 
     the Army.
       On the day young Dan Inouye left for Army training, his 
     father went with him to the pickup point. He'd been silent 
     for most of the ride. Then he cleared his throat, and looking 
     straight ahead, he said to his son: ``America has been good 
     to us... We all love this country. Whatever you do, do not 
     dishonor your country. Remember; never dishonor your family. 
     And if you must give your life, do so with honor.'' 
     Senator Inouye later recalled: ``I knew exactly what he 
     meant. I said, `Yes, sir. Good-bye.' ''
       Dan Inouye shipped off to Europe, part of the 442nd 
     Regimental Combat Team, made up mostly of Japanese Americans. 
     As the Italian peninsula came into view, Dan Inouye asked 
     some of his comrades what they'd been thinking on their last 
     night aboard ship. Most said the same thing: they hoped they 
     wouldn't dishonor their families. Senator Inouye would later 
     say: ``We knew very well that, if we succeeded, their 
     lives''--the lives of the little brothers and sisters and 
     parents back home--``would be better.''
       The 442nd's motto was ``Go for Broke.'' Its men would prove 
     they were prepared to risk everything they had to win. 
     Prepared to match prejudice with bravery of the highest 
       Senator, you once told me about a particular day in Italy. 
     You sensed that the war was probably coming to an end, and 
     you told one of your sergeants--for you'd received a 
     battlefield commission by then, because the losses in your 
     unit had been so great--you told that sergeant that the war 
     was probably coming to an end soon, that he should be careful 
     and not become one of the last men killed. What you didn't 
     tell me was that you never intended to follow your own 
       The war ended in Europe on May 8, 1945. Just 18 days 
     before, on April 21, 1945, near San Terenzo, Lieutenant 
     Inouye's unit was ordered to attack a heavily defended ridge. 
     As the lieutenant crawled up the slope, he was hit by machine 
     gun fire. But he kept going, destroying one machine-gun nest, 
     then a second one, before he fell to the ground. He dragged 
     himself toward a third bunker, and as he was about to pull 
     the pin on his last grenade, a German grenade tore into his 
     arm. He pried the grenade out of his lifeless hand, and threw 
     it at the bunker. Another bullet hit him in the leg. Finally 
     a medic gave him a shot of morphine, but Lieutenant Inouye 
     wouldn't let them evacuate him until the area was secure . . 
     . until he knew his men were safe.
       Dan Inouye didn't play it safe. He risked everything to 
     protect his men.
       Uncommon valor was a common virtue throughout that unit. 
     Based on their numbers and length of service, the 442nd 
     became the most decorated unit in the history of the U.S. 
     Army. And Daniel Inouye was one of the most decorated heroes 
     among them . . . to include a much-belated Medal of Honor.
       Dan Inouye's story of valor in battle would be more than 
     enough to secure his place in history. But, it was merely 
     prologue to an amazing story of service to our country.
       The story continued when the people of Hawaii voted Daniel 
     Inouye into office in 1954, as a member of the Territorial 
     Legislature. In 1959, when Hawaii achieved statehood, he 
     became its first member of the U.S. House of 
     Representatives. In 1962, he was elected to the Senate. He 
     is now in his seventh term.
       Fifty years after entering public service, the man best 
     known to Hawaiians simply as . . . ``Dan'' . . . is a legend 
     on the Islands. I think Dan Inouye's an American legend, too.
       Maybe there's a sort of irony that public servants from our 
     nation's farthest outposts--Hawaii and Alaska--stand at the 
     center of America's political life. I have had more than a 
     passing interest in America's relations with Asia, and I can 
     tell you how fortunate we are to have in Hawaii a state that 
     extends America's reach so deeply into the Asia-Pacific. How 
     fortunate we are to have a senator like Daniel Inouye, a man 
     informed by the wisdom of his years, who looks only to the 
     future. He gazes west, sees possibilities, and understands 
     how important our relations with that great region of the 
     world are for the future of this country. And he has done 
     great service to this nation to build and strengthen those 
     key relationships.
       And we are fortunate in how great a friend Senator Dan 
     Inouye has been to America's Armed Forces.
       There is no one who understands better what the men and 
     women of our Armed Forces want for this country and what they 
     are prepared to give.
       No one who understands better how important the unstinting 
     support of the American people is for our troops as they 
     undertake their difficult and dangerous work.
       No one who understands better than Dan Inouye the kind of 
     devotion to our nation the American soldier takes to war . . 
     . and how important is the pledge we make to them that we 
     will leave no man or woman behind.
       Dan Inouye shares this nation's commitment . . . that we 
     will not rest until we have the fullest possible accounting 
     of each American who has risked it all in service to our 
       We thank you, Senator, for your support of our men and 
     women in uniform, including on this critical issue.
       Fifty years in public service is an impressive milestone. 
     And just last week, Senator Inouye celebrated another 
     significant milestone--his 80th birthday.
       He spent that day as he spends most others . . . at his 
     desk, working for America and America's men and women in 
     uniform. It's a privilege, Senator, to have you here to wish 
     you ``Happy 80th Birthday.'' . . . And many more.
       Ladies and gentlemen, it's an honor to present to you 
     Senator Daniel Inouye.

                         Senator Daniel Inouye

       Secretary Wolfowitz, General Myers, former prisoners of 
     war, family members of our missing in action, fellow 
     veterans, and the men and women who proudly wear the uniform 
     of our Armed Forces who are with us here today.
       It is an honor for me to stand with you this morning as our 
     Nation pauses to recognize those who have gone before us, 
     those who have sacrificed so much, and continue to do so.

[[Page S10256]]

       Grateful Americans are holding events such as these in 
     cities and towns across this great land of ours, to express 
     their gratitude to those who sacrificed their freedom to 
     ensure ours, our American POWs, and to those who have never 
     returned from foreign battlefields, our MIAs.
       Americans honor their POWs and MIAs, their comrades, and 
     their families through our worldwide commitment to account 
     for our missing warriors, to bring our heroes home from 
     distant lands, and to reunite them once again with their 
     loved ones.
       American POWs and MIAs have honored their Nation through 
     their service and sacrifice, much like the magnificent young 
     men and women standing so proudly on the parade field before 
     us today. As I marched the line this morning, I was inspired 
     beyond words by their professionalism. You honor all of us 
     with your presence this morning.
       Those who wear the uniform today, and those who went before 
     them know--better than most--why bringing our missing 
     Americans home is a sacred commitment. That mission rests 
     squarely on the shoulders of those of us to whom you have 
     entrusted some measure of leadership.
       Your support and encouragement will continue to hold us 
     accountable. Though this effort is ingrained in the hearts 
     and minds of Americans, it is you who ensure this mission 
       I want to say especially to the families of the missing and 
     to you--their comrades--that your government will not rest 
     until all come home.
       More than 140 years ago, President Lincoln, desperately 
     seeking to hold our Nation together, spoke of ``. . . those 
     brave men who are now on the tented field or nobly meeting 
     the foe in the front . . . that they who sleep in death . . . 
     are not forgotten by those in highest authority . . . and 
     should their fate be the same, their remains will not be 
       At the dedication of a grand, national cemetery near the 
     battlefield--at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in perhaps the most 
     eloquent 272 words in American history, the President spoke 
     to the families of those lost and to the soldiers still in 
       He spoke of the honor that we must pay to those who have 
     made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure their sacrifices were 
     not in vain to ensure that this Nation will never forget.
       We are equally committed today to the families of the 
     missing from past conflicts, and to the soldiers still in 
       More than 600 men and women are working around the world on 
     that commitment--that mission. In my home State of Hawaii we 
     have the headquarters of the Joint Task Force on Full 
     Accounting that carries out these searches and the Combat 
     Identification Lab which goes through the painstaking process 
     of identifying the remains which are discovered.
       I am very proud of their work and the small contribution 
     that my state makes to this effort.
       You are aware of the monumental effort to account for the 
     missing from all wars. But the commitment goes much further 
     than that.
       While we seek to bring home the warriors of the past, we 
     must also ensure that you warriors of the present--should you 
     go into harm's way--your Nation will bring you home. 
     ``Whatever it takes . . .''
       The results of this mission can be seen on distant 
     battlefields where numerous personnel in Afghanistan and Iraq 
     have been recovered.
       In Iraq alone, our heroic rescue forces have recovered more 
     than 75 of our warriors alive. But in spite of our commitment 
     to recover today's service members from today's battlefields, 
     our challenge remains to account for those who fell in past 
       I am told that more than 1,800 are unaccounted for from the 
     Vietnam war--730 others have been identified and returned to 
     their families since the end of that war.
       Just last week, our troops from the Joint Task Force on 
     Full Accounting brought home the remains of more American 
     soldiers from the Korean war.
       Throughout the world--from North Korea to Southeast Asia, 
     in the South Pacific, and even in Europe and Russia, with the 
     cooperation of the people and governments of many nations, 
     the work goes on around the clock.
       My fellow Americans, this past weekend the Nation 
     commemorated the third anniversary of the terrorist attack on 
     the United States. The horrifying memory of the attack 
     remains fresh in our minds.
       Less than one week after 9-11, Senator Ted Stevens and I 
     were sent by the Senate to New York to assess the damage as 
     we prepared our first supplemental appropriations measure to 
     respond to the tragedy. As we circled the smoldering ruins I 
     was struck by the devastation that lay below us.
       The day before, we had toured the wreckage here at the 
       Let me tell all of you that those two experiences are 
     etched in my brain never to be forgotten.
       Today we recognize that the world remains a dangerous 
     place. As much as we desire to live in peace we understand 
     that there is likely to always be a need for a strong 
     military to defend this country and to fight our Nation's 
       Our obligation is both to future generations of those who 
     go in harm's way, and to those of the past, as Lincoln said, 
     we will assure all of you and them that we shall never 
       That, my fellow Americans is our solemn pledge. Thank you.