(House of Representatives - April 04, 2017)

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[Pages H2686-H2691]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 3, 2017, the Chair recognizes the gentleman from Texas (Mr. 
Castro) for 30 minutes.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I am here this evening joined by 
colleagues from the Foreign Affairs Committee to discuss President 
Trump's extreme, proposed cuts to the International Affairs Budget.
  The President's budget proposal would reduce funding for the State 
Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development, what we 
know as USAID, by nearly a third. The proposal would reduce overall 
funding for the International Affairs Budget by $17.4 billion, or 31 
  This would be a devastating reduction. U.S. diplomats and development 
experts work to shape a freer, more secure, and more prosperous world 
while advancing U.S. interests abroad. They build relationships with 
foreign counterparts and resolve disputes to preserve peace and reduce 
the need for military action.
  They also provide critical services to U.S. citizens living and 
working overseas and screen people seeking visas to visit the United 
States. This work would all be compromised by the administration's 
funding cuts. These cuts could also undercut President Trump's 
purported priorities.
  For example, these reductions could interrupt the Bureau of 
Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism and U.S. efforts to 
disrupt money laundering and terror financing. Funding could be slashed 
for nonproliferation, counternarcotics, and consular affairs--efforts 
specifically focused on protecting Americans from foreign threats.
  This work overseas is always important, but it is especially 
necessary now in this tumultuous time, when the United States faces 
complex challenges around the world:
  In Asia, we see increased tensions in the South China Sea and an 
increasingly hostile North Korea.
  In Africa, there is a devastating famine in East Africa, brutal civil 
wars, as well as terrorist organizations like Boko Haram and al-
  The refugee crisis stemming from unrest in the Middle East continues, 
and we have just seen reports of more gas attacks on the Syrian people.
  In South America, the people of Colombia have experienced devastating 
floods that claimed more than 270 lives, a breakdown in the rule of law 
in the Northern Triangle, and a government in Venezuela that has become 
an oppressive dictatorship.
  Even in Western Europe, we continue to combat terrorist threats from 
organizations like ISIS, who 2 weeks ago inspired the attack in London.
  These are challenging times for our world that require a fully funded 
International Affairs Budget. But America's unilateral diplomatic and 
development work is just one piece of our engagement overseas.
  Following World War II, the United States helped lead the creation of 
several multilateral organizations to foster peace and stability in the 
world like the United Nations, NATO, and the World Bank. With its 
budget proposal and heated rhetoric, the Trump administration is 
threatening that architecture of peace and stability.
  For example, the President recommends cutting funding for 
multilateral development banks by $650 million over 3 years and capping 
United Nations peacekeeping contributions to 25 percent of total 
funding. These decisions will have a significant destabilizing impact 
on the global order. If America retreats from the international stage, 
other powers, like China, will step in to fill that void and exert 
their influence. We cannot afford for that to happen.
  That is why my colleagues and I are here tonight, to speak out 
against the shortsighted, dangerous budget proposal and emphasize the 
importance of the United States' diplomatic and development work.

[[Page H2687]]

  And with that, I yield to the gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. Sires).
  Mr. SIRES. Mr. Speaker, as the ranking member of the Western 
Hemisphere Subcommittee, I am very concerned about these cuts. This 
undermines our leadership around the world and makes Americans less 
safe. When you consider that foreign aid is only 1 percent of our 
entire budget and helps keep Americans safe, it is an investment in our 
  Fully funding our State Department and ensuring our diplomats have 
the resources they need prevents conflicts, diffuses crises, and works 
to keep American soldiers out of harm's way.
  U.S. foreign aid helps protect some of the world's poorest people 
from disease, starvation, and death. President Trump's own Secretary of 
Defense, General James Mattis, said: ``If you don't fund the State 
Department fully, then I need to buy more ammunition. . . .''
  I signed onto a letter led by Ranking Member Engel, along with my 
Democratic colleagues on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, urging 
the Speaker to oppose these draconian cuts.
  We are already hearing from our allies all over the Western 
Hemisphere how dangerous these cuts could be to the stability of the 
region. Countries like Colombia fought a 52-year-long war with the FARC 
guerrillas, and now, when they need us the most to implement the peace 
deal, the Trump administration has signaled it is ready to abandon one 
of our strongest partners in the world. The President claims to care 
about protecting our sovereign border, but this budget says otherwise.
  Both Republican and Democrat administrations have pushed for a strong 
security, economic, and trade relationship with Mexico. Pushing our 
neighbors away could cost billions of dollars to our U.S. businesses.

                              {time}  1830

  Instead of working with our partners in the Western Hemisphere, 
President Trump is preventing us from maintaining a robust relationship 
with our neighbors to pay for this unrealistic and ineffective wall.
  In Central America, we risk seeing a repeat of the 2014 crisis when 
nearly 70,000 children made the dangerous journeys from Guatemala, 
Honduras, and El Salvador after being threatened with violence, 
assault, and forced gang recruitment. Our engagement in Central America 
is helping to bring calm to the region, and abandoning our friends in 
their time of need puts America at risk. Retreating from the world will 
allow other countries like China and Russia to take our place as a 
global leader.
  Instead of building a wall, the President should continue working 
with our neighbors to enhance cooperation instead of alienating friends 
who have stood by us for decades.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I should have mentioned, of course, 
that Congressman Sires is the ranking member on the Western Hemisphere 
Subcommittee on the Foreign Affairs Committee. His experience in that 
region in particular is vast.
  I am glad that you mentioned that this is really part of a larger 
theme and a larger concern, because President Trump, in addition to 
proposing to cut a lot of funds for diplomacy and development around 
the world, has also shown a real hostility towards other nations, 
including some of our best allies and friends around the world, and 
that is of great concern.
  For example, this issue with Mexico which you brought up, forcing 
Mexico to pay for the wall and constructing this wall along the 2,000-
mile border that we have between the United States and Mexico and 
cutting aid if necessary, which he has threatened to do if Mexico won't 
pay for it, I have said very clearly that that creates an opportunity 
for China to step in or the Chinese President Xi Jinping to go into 
Latin America, go into Mexico and offer to give Mexico whatever Donald 
Trump takes away. That would strengthen China's hand in yet another 
region of the world.
  Of course, China is a big economic competitor of the United States, 
and I relate to my Texas folks because Texas does an incredible amount 
of trade with Mexico, and we have been very fortunate over the years 
that Mexico buys a lot of our stuff. They buy a lot of our goods. But 
they don't have to just buy that stuff from Texas or the United States, 
generally. They could go buy it from Brazil. They could buy it from 
China or somewhere else.
  So thank you for mentioning that.
  Mr. SIRES. Mr. Speaker, I couldn't agree more. Already we are 
starting to see the influence of China in most of the countries in 
South America.
  You know, I had a conversation with one of the presidents of the 
colleges in Colombia on one of my trips. He was telling me how the 
influence of China in Colombia is so strong. He was telling me that the 
second most studied language in Colombia today is Mandarin. When you 
think of that, that is a frightening thought.
  You talk about the influence in Nicaragua of the Chinese. They even 
think of building a canal, which many people think will never happen. 
But to have China so close to our borders is not good for America. To 
push away our neighbors is not good for America. We must work with our 
neighbors. People don't realize the amount of economic activity between 
the United States and the rest of Central America and Mexico.
  I read something very funny the other day. Well, it is not funny, but 
it is really sad. They were discussing this wall that the President 
proposes. Some people say: Where are we going to put it? In the middle 
of the river? Or are we going to put it on the American side and give 
the river to Mexico? Or are we going to go invade Mexico and put the 
wall on the Mexican side and keep the river to ourselves?
  So I thought that was telling of the difficulty.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. It has been a very thorny issue, as you can 
imagine, especially in Texas. Both Republicans and Democrats have 
expressed deep concern about building a wall and spending $20 billion 
to $30 billion to do it, and that concern, I think, has reached the 
U.S. Congress. I think that is part of why you see a reluctance on the 
part of the Senate, for example, to move forward with this in their 
appropriations bill, in their budget.
  I yield to our ranking member on the Foreign Affairs Committee, the 
gentleman from New York (Mr. Engel).
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, as the ranking member on the House Foreign 
Affairs Committee, I join with my colleagues. I want to thank the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Castro), who is a valued member of our 
committee, for his leadership on this critical issue, and also the 
gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. Sires). I agree with everything that 
they have said heretofore about these draconian cuts.
  I am here because I am rising to strongly reject the Trump 
Administration's draconian cuts to the International Affairs Budget. 
Now 2\1/2\ months into the Trump Administration, I find myself deeply 
troubled by the direction American foreign policy is heading on many 
fronts. I was particularly shocked when the White House released its 
fiscal year 2018 budget calling for a 31 percent cut to American 
diplomacy and development efforts.
  In my view, cutting the International Affairs Budget by even a 
fraction of that amount would be devastating. We haven't seen many 
details, but a cut that drastic would surely mean that too many efforts 
and initiatives that do so much good would wind up on the chopping 
  Here is the bottom line: Slashing diplomacy and development puts 
American lives at risk. If we no longer have diplomacy and development 
tools to meet international challenges, what does that leave? It leaves 
the military.
  Now, don't get me wrong. I have always supported a strong national 
defense, and I do support our military, and I do support giving them 
more money. But I also support using military force only as a measure 
of last resort. We should not send American servicemembers into harm's 
way unless we have exhausted every other option. If we are not 
investing in diplomacy and development, we aren't even giving these 
other options a chance.

  We rely on diplomacy to resolve conflicts across negotiating tables 
at multilateral gatherings and in quiet corners so that we don't need 
to resolve them down the line on the battlefield. Our diplomats work to 
strengthen old alliances and build new bridges of friendship and shared 
  Just last week, the Foreign Affairs Committee held a hearing on the

[[Page H2688]]

Trump Administration's efforts to decimate our International Affairs 
Budget. In his testimony at the hearing, former Under Secretary of 
State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns said that morale at the 
State Department is ``at its lowest point in my memory.''
  It is deeply disturbing to hear that our diplomats, many of whom 
serve in dangerous places at high risk to themselves and their 
families, are so disheartened.
  Of course it is not just former diplomats who reject these cuts. A 
recent letter signed by more than 120 retired generals and admirals to 
House and Senate leadership said: ``We urge you to ensure that 
resources for the International Affairs Budget keep pace with the 
growing global threats and opportunities we face. Now is not the time 
to retreat.''
  Mr. Speaker, I include their letter in the Record in its entirety.

                                                February 27, 2017.
     Hon. Paul Ryan,
     Speaker of the House,
     House of Representatives.
     Hon. Nancy Pelosi,
     Minority Leader,
     House of Representatives.
     Hon. Mitch McConnell,
     Majority Leader,
     U.S. Senate.
     Hon. Chuck Schumer,
     Minority Leader,
     U.S. Senate.
       Dear Speaker Ryan, Minority Leader Pelosi, Majority Leader 
     McConnell, and Minority Leader Schumer: As you and your 
     colleagues address the federal budget for Fiscal Year 2018. 
     we write as retired three and four star flag and general 
     officers from all branches of the armed services to share our 
     strong conviction that elevating and strengthening diplomacy 
     and development alongside defense are critical to keeping 
     America safe.
       We know from our service in uniform that many of the crises 
     our nation faces do not have military solutions alone--from 
     confronting violent extremist groups like ISIS in the Middle 
     East and North Africa to preventing pandemics like Ebola and 
     stabilizing weak and fragile states that can lead to greater 
     instability. There are 65 million displaced people today. the 
     most since World War II, with consequences including refugee 
     flows that are threatening America's strategic allies in 
     Israel, Jordan, Turkey, and Europe.
       The State Department. USAID, Millennium Challenge 
     Corporation, Peace Corps and other development agencies are 
     critical to preventing conflict and reducing the need to put 
     our men and women in uniform in harm's way. As Secretary 
     James Mattis said while Commander of U.S. Central Command, 
     ``If you don't fully fund the State Department, then I need 
     to buy more ammunition.'' The military will lead the fight 
     against terrorism on the battlefield, but it needs strong 
     civilian partners in the battle against the drivers of 
     extremism--lack of opportunity, insecurity, injustice, and 
       We recognize that America's strategic investments in 
     diplomacy and development--like all of U.S. investments--must 
     be effective and accountable. Significant reforms have been 
     undertaken since 9/11, many of which have been embodied in 
     recent legislation in Congress with strong bipartisan 
     support--on human trafficking, the rights of women and girls. 
     trade and energy in Africa, wildlife trafficking. water. food 
     security. and transparency and accountability.
       We urge you to ensure that resources for the International 
     Affairs Budget keep pace with the growing global threats and 
     opportunities we face. Now is not the time to retreat.
       1. General Keith B. Alexander, USA (Ret.), Director. 
     National Security Agency ('05-'14), Commander, U.S. Cyber 
     Command ('10-'14)
       2. General John R. Allen, USMC (Ret.), Commander, NATO 
     International Security Force ('11-'13), Commander, U.S. 
     Forces-Afghanistan ('11-'13)
       3. Lt. General Edward G. Anderson III, USA (Ret.), Vice 
     Commander, U.S. Element, North American Aerospace Defense 
     Command/Deputy, Commander, U.S. Northern Command ('02-'04)
       4. Lt. General Thomas L. Baptiste, USAF (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chairman, NATO Military Committee ('04-'07)
       5. Lt. General Ronald R. Blanck, USA (Ret.), Surgeon 
     General of the United States Army ('96-'00)
       6. Lt. General H. Steven Blum, USA (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commander, U.S. North American Aerospace Defense Command and 
     U.S. Northern Command ('09-'10)
       7. Lt. General Steven W. Boutelle, USA (Ret.), Chief 
     Information Officer and G6, United States Army ('03-'07)
       8. Admiral Frank L. Bowman, USN (Ret.), Director, Naval 
     Nuclear Propulsion ('96-'04)
       9. General Charles G. Boyd, USAF (Ret.), Deputy Commander 
     in Chief, U.S. European Command ('92-'95)
       10. General Bryan Doug Brown, LISA (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Special Operations Command ('03-'07)
       11. General Arthur E. Brown, Jr., USA (Ret.), Vice Chief of 
     Staff of the United States Amy ('87-'89)
       12. Vice Admiral Michael Bucchi, USN (Ret.), Commander of 
     the United States Third Fleet ('00-'03)
       13. Lt. General John H. Campbell, USAF (Ret.), Associate 
     Director of Central Intelligence for Military Support, 
     Central Intelligence Agency ('00-'03)
       14. General Bruce Carlson, USAF (Ret.), Director, National 
     Reconnaissance Office ('09-'12)
       15. General George W. Casey, Jr., USA (Ret.), Chief of 
     Staff of the United States Army ('07-'11)
       16. Lt. General John G. Castellaw, USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commandant for Programs and Resources ('07-'08)
       17. Lt. General Dennis D. Cavin, USA (Ret.), Commander, 
     U.S. Army Accessions Command ('02-'04)
       18. General Peter W. Chiarelli, USA (Ret.), Vice Chief of 
     Staff, U.S. Army ('08-'12)
       19. Lt. General Daniel W. Christman, USA (Ret.), 
     Superintendent, United States Military Academy ('96-'01)
       20. Lt. General George R. Christmas. USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Staff for Manpower and Reserve Affairs ('94-'96)
       21. Admiral Vern Clark, USN (Ret.), Chief of Naval 
     Operations ('00-'05)
       22. Admiral Archie R. Clemins, USN (Ret.), Commander in 
     Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet ('96-'99)
       23. General Richard A. ``Dick'' Cody, USA (Ret.), Vice 
     Chief of Staff, United States Army ('04-'08)
       24. Lt. General John B. Conaway, USAF (Ret.), Chief, 
     National Guard Bureau ('90-'93)
       25. General James T. Conway, USMC (Ret.), Commandant, U.S. 
     Marine Corps ('06-'10)
       26. General John D.W. Corley, USAF (Ret.), Commander, Air 
     Combat Command ('07-'09)
       27. General Bantz J. Craddock, USA (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     European Command and NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe 
       28. Vice Admiral Lewis W. Crenshaw, Jr., USN (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Naval Operations for Resources, Requirements, and 
     Assessments ('04-'07)
       29. Lt. General John ``Mark'' M. Curran, USA (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commanding General Futures, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine 
     Command ('03-'07)
       30. General Terrence R. Dake, USMC (Ret.), Assistant 
     Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps ('98-'00)
       31. Lt. General Robert R. Dierker, USAF (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commander, U.S. Pacific Command ('02-'04)
       32. Admiral Kirkland H. Donald, USN (Ret.), Director, Naval 
     Nuclear Propulsion ('04-'12)
       33. Lt. General James M. Dubik, USA (Ret.), Commander, 
     Multi National Security Transition Command and NATO Training 
     Mission-Iraq ('07-'08)
       34. Lt. General Kenneth E. Eickmann, USAF (Ret.), 
     Commander, Aeronautical Systems Center, U.S. Air Force ('96-
       35. Admiral William J. Fallon, USN (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Central Command ('07-'08)
       36. Admiral Thomas B. Fargo, USN (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Pacific Command ('02-'05)
       37. Admiral Mark P. Fitzgerald, USN (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Naval Forces Europe ('07-'10) and U.S. Naval Forces Africa 
       38. General Ronald R. Fogleman, USAF (Ret.), Chief of Staff 
     of the United States Air Force ('94-'97)
       39. Lt. General Benjamin C. Freakley, USA (Ret.), 
     Commander, U.S. Army Accessions Command ('07-'12)
       40. Lt. General Robert G. Gard, Jr., USA (Ret.), President, 
     National Defense University ('77-'81)
       41. Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert, USN (Ret.), Chief of 
     Naval Operations ('11-'15)
       42. Lt. General Arthur J. Gregg, USA (Ret.), Army Deputy 
     Chief of Staff ('79-'81)
       43. Lt. General Wallace C. Gregson, USMC (Ret.), Commanding 
     General, Marine Corps Forces Pacific and Marine Corps Forces 
     Central Command ('03-'05)
       44. Vice Admiral Lee F. Gunn, USN (Ret.), Inspector 
     General, U.S. Navy ('97-'00)
       45. General Michael W. Hagee, USMC (Ret.), Commandant, U.S. 
     Marine Corps ('O3-'06)
       46. Lt. General Michael A. Hamel, USAF (Ret.), Commander, 
     Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center ('05-'08)
       47. General John W. Handy, USAF (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Transportation Command and Commander, Air Mobility Command 
       48. Admiral John C. Harvey, Jr., USN (Ret.), Commander, 
     U.S. Fleet Forces Command ('09-'12)
       49. General Richard E. Hawley, USAF (Ret.), Commander, Air 
     Combat Command ('96-'99)
       50. General Michael V. Hayden, USAF (Ret.), Director, 
     Central Intelligence Agency ('06-'09)
       51. General Paul V. Hester, USAF (Ret.), Commander, Pacific 
     Air Forces. Air Component Commander for the U.S. Pacific 
     Command Commander ('04-'07)
       52. General James T. Hill, USA (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Southern Command ('02-'04)
       53. Admiral James R. Hogg. USN (Ret.), U.S. Military 
     Representative, NATO Military Committee ('88-'91)
       54. Lt. General Walter S. Hogle Jr., USAF (Ret.), 
     Commander, 15th Air Force ('00-'01)
       55. Lt. General Steven A. Hummer, USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commander for Military Operations, U.S. Africa Command ('13-
       56. Lt. General William E. Ingram, Jr.. USA (Ret.), 
     Director, U.S. Army National Guard ('11-'14)

[[Page H2689]]


       57. General James L. Jamerson, USAF (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commander in Chief, U.S. European Command ('95-'98)
       58. Lt. General Arlen D. Jameson, USAF (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commander in Chief, U.S. Strategic Command ('93-'96)
       59. Admiral Gregory G. Johnson, USN (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Naval Forces Europe/Commander in Chief, Allied Forces 
     Southern Europe ('01-'04)
       60. Admiral Jerome L. Johnson, USN (Ret.), Vice Chief of 
     Naval Operations ('90-'92)
       61. Lt. General P. K. ``Ken'' Keen, USA (Ret.), Chief, 
     Office of the U.S. Defense Representative to Pakistan ('11-
       62. Lt. General Richard L. Kelly, USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commandant, Installations and Logistics ('02-'05)
       63. Lt. General Claudia J. Kennedy, USA (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Staff for Army Intelligence ('97-'00)
       64. General Paul J. Kem, USA (Ret.), Commanding General, 
     U.S. Army Materiel Command ('01-'04)
       65. General William F. Kernan, USA (Ret.), Supreme Allied 
     Commander, Atlantic/Commander in Chief. U.S. Joint Forces 
     Command ('00-'02)
       66. Lt. General Donald L. Kerrick, USA (Ret.), Deputy 
     National Security Advisor to The President of the United 
     States ('00-'01)
       67. Lt. General Bruce B. Knutson, USMC (Ret.), Commanding 
     General, Marine Corp Combat Command ('00-'01)
       68. Vice Admiral Albert H. Konetzni, Jr., USN (Ret.), 
     Deputy Conunander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command and U.S. 
     Atlantic Fleet ('01-'04)
       69. General Charles Chandler Krulak, USMC (Ret.), 
     Commandant of the Marine Corps ('95-'99)
        70. (Ret.), Lt. General William J. Lennox, Jr., USA 
     (Ret.), Superintendent, United States Military Academy ('01-
       71. Vice Admiral Stephen F. Loftus, USN (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Naval Operations for Logistics ('90-'94)
       72. General Lance W. Lord, USAF (Ret.), Commander, U.S. Air 
     Force Space Command ('02-'06)
       73. Admiral James M. Loy, USCG (Ret.), Commandant, U.S. 
     Coast Guard ('98-'02)
       74. Vice Admiral Joseph Maguire, USN (Ret.), Deputy 
     Director for Strategic Operational Planning, National 
     Counterterrorism Center ('07-'10)
       75. Admiral Henry H. Mauz, Jr., USN (Ret.), Commander in 
     Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet ('92-'94)
       76. Vice Admiral Justin D. McCarthy, SC, USN (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Naval Operations, Fleet Readiness, and Logistics 
       77. Lt. General Dennis McCarthy, USMC (Ret.), Commander, 
     Marine Forces Reserve ('01-'05)
       78. Vice Admiral John ``Mike'' M. McConnell, USN (Ret.), 
     Director of the National Security Agency ('92-'96)
       79. General David D. McKiernan, USA (Ret.), Commander, 
     International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan ('08-
       80. General Dan K. McNeill, USA, (Ret.), Commander, 
     International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan 
       81. General Merrill A. McPeak, USAF (Ret.), Chief of Staff, 
     U.S. Air Force ('90-'94)
       82. Lt. General Paul T. Mikolashek, USA (Ret.), Inspector 
     General, U.S. Army/Commanding General of the Third U.S. Army 
     Forces Central Command ('00-'02)
       83. Vice Admiral Joseph S. Mobley, USN (Ret.), Commander, 
     Naval Air Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet ('98-'01)
       84. General Thomas R. Morgan, USMC (Ret.), Assistant 
     Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps ('86-'88)
       85. Lt. General Carol A. Mutter, USMC (Ret.), Deputy Chief 
     of Staff, Manpower and Reserve Affairs, Marine Corps ('96-
       86. Admiral Robert J. Natter, USN (Ret.), Commander, Fleet 
     Forces Command/Commander, U.S. Atlantic Fleet ('00-'03)
       87. General William L. Nyland, USMC (Ret.), Assistant 
     Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps ('02-'05)
       88. Lt. General Tad J. Oelstrom, USAF (Ret.), 
     Superintendent, U.S. Air Force Academy ('97-'00)
       89. Admiral Eric T. Olson, USN (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Special Operation Command ('07-'11)
       90. Lt. General H. P. ``Pete'' Osman, USMC (Ret.), 
     Commanding General II MEF ('02-'04)
       91. Lt. General Jeffrey W. Oster. USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Administrator and Chief Operating Officer, Coalition 
     Provisional Authority, Iraq '04), Deputy Commandant for 
     Programs and Resources, Headquarters Marine Corps ('98)
       92. Admiral William A. Owens, USN (Ret.), Vice Chairman, 
     Joint Chiefs of Staff ('94-'96)
       93. Lt. General Frank A. Panter, Jr., USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commandant for Installations and Logistics ('09-'12)
       94. Vice Admiral David Pekoske, USCG (Ret.), Vice 
     Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard ('09-'10)
       95. General David H. Petraeus, USA (Ret.), Director, 
     Central Intelligence Agency ('11-'12); Commander, Coalition 
     Forces in Afghanistan ('10-'11) and Iraq ('07-'08)
       96. Vice Admiral Carol M. Pottenger, USN (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Staff for Capability Development, NATO Allied 
     Command Transformation ('10-'13)
       97. Admiral Joseph W. Prueher, USN (Ret.), Commander in 
     Chief, U.S. Pacific Command ('96-'99)
       98. Lt. General Harry D. Raduege, Jr., USAF (Ret.), 
     Director, Defense Information Systems Agency/Commander, Joint 
     Task Force for Global Network Operations/Deputy Commander, 
     Global Network Operations and Defense, U.S. Strategic Command 
     Joint Forces Headquarters, Information Operations ('00-'05)
       99. Vice Admiral Norman W. Ray, USN (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chairman, NATO Military Committee ('92-'95)
       100. Lt. General John F. Regni, USAF (Ret.), 
     Superintendent, United States Air Force Academy ('05-'09)
       101. General Victor ``Gene'' E. Renuart, USAF (Ret.), 
     Commander, North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. 
     Northern Command ('07-'10)
       102. General Robert W. RisCassi, USA (Ret.), Commander in 
     Chief, United Nations Command/Commander in Chief, Republic of 
     Korea/U.S. Combined Forces Command ('90-'93)
       103. Lt. General Norman R. Seip, USAF (Ret.), Commander, 
     12th Air Force/Air Forces Southern ('06-'09)
       104. General Henry H. Shelton, USA (Ret.), Chairman, Joint 
     Chiefs of Staff ('97-'01)
       105. Admiral William D. Smith, USN (Ret.), U.S. Military 
     Representative, NATO Military Committee ('91-'93)
       106. Admiral Leighton W. Smith, Jr., USN (Ret.), Commander 
     in Chief, U.S. Naval Forces Europe/Commander in Chief, Allied 
     Forces Southern Europe ('94-'96)
       107. Lt. General James N. Soligan, USAF (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Staff for Transformation, Allied Command 
     Transformation ('06-'10)
       108. Admiral James G. Stavridis, USN (Ret.), Commander, 
     U.S. European Command and NATO Supreme Allied Commander, 
     Europe ('09-'13)
       109. Lt. General Martin R. Steele, USMC (Ret.), Deputy 
     Chief of Staff for Plans, Policies and Operations, U.S. 
     Marine Corps ('97-'99)
       110. General Carl W. Stiner, USA (Ret.), Commander in 
     Chief, U.S. Special Operations Command ('90-'93)
       111. Vice Admiral Edward M. Straw, USN (Ret.), Director, 
     Defense Logistics Agency ('92-'96)
       112. Vice Admiral William D. Sullivan, USN (Ret.), U.S. 
     Military Representative to NATO Military Committee ('06-'09)
       113. Lt. General William J. Troy, USA (Ret.), Director, 
     Army Staff ('10-'13)
       114. Admiral Henry G. Ulrich, USN (Ret.), Commander, U.S. 
     Naval Forces Europe/Commander, Joint Forces Command Naples 
       115. General Charles F. Wald, USAF (Ret.), Deputy 
     Commander, U.S. European Command ('02-'06)
       116. General William S. Wallace, USA (Ret.), Commanding 
     General, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command ('05-'08)
       117. Lt. General William ``Kip'' E. Ward, USA (Ret.), 
     Commander, U.S. Africa Command ('07-'11)
       118. General Charles E. Wilhelm, USMC (Ret.), Commander, 
     U.S. Southern Command ('97-'00)
       119. General Michael J. Williams, USMC (Ret.), Assistant 
     Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps ('00-'02)
       120. General Ronald W. Yates, USAF (Ret.), Commander. Air 
     Force Materiel Command ('92-'95)
       121. General Anthony C. Zinni, USMC (Ret.), Commander in 
     Chief, U.S. Central Command ('97-'00)

  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, in 2013, Secretary of Defense Mattis 
similarly said: ``If you don't fund the State Department fully, then I 
need to buy more ammunition ultimately. So I think it's a cost benefit 
ratio. The more that we put into the State Department's diplomacy, 
hopefully the less we have to put into a military budget as we deal 
with the outcome of an apparent American withdrawal from the 
international scene.''
  That is from Secretary of Defense Mattis. I couldn't agree with him 
  Now, I believe that development helps to lift countries and 
communities up today so they can become strong partners on the global 
stage tomorrow. A lot of us think we have a moral obligation to help 
cure disease, improve access to education, and advance human rights. 
But even if it were not the right thing to do, it would be the smart 
thing to do because those efforts lead to greater stability, more 
responsive governments, and stronger rule of law--populations that 
share our values and priorities. Poverty and lack of opportunity, on 
the other hand, provide fertile ground for those who mean us harm.
  All these efforts, by the way, cost cents on the dollar compared to 
military engagement. People think international affairs and foreign aid 
are a massive chunk of the Federal budget, but the chart right over 
here next to me shows how it actually stacks up: 1.4 percent. And we 
make that sliver of the pie even smaller. It will come back on us in 
spades. 1.4 percent of our Federal budget goes to all these programs.
  The diseases we don't combat will reach our shores; the communities 
on which we turn or backs may be the next generation of people who mean 

[[Page H2690]]

harm; and the conflicts we fail to defuse may well grow into the wars 
we need to fight later at a much higher cost in terms of American blood 
and treasure. Just imagine having to tell the parents of a young 
American soldier that their son or daughter was killed in battle 
because we weren't willing to spend the tiny sums needed to prevent the 
  Finally, let me say that the American people don't want to see us 
slash diplomacy and development. In fact, recent data shows that 72 
percent of Americans believe the country should play a leading global 
role. Nearly 6 in 10 believe funding levels at the State Department 
should stay the same or increase.
  Fortunately, the Congress is a coequal branch of government. I want 
to the remind the executive branch of that. We in Congress decide how 
much to invest in our international affairs, not the White House.
  For example, regardless of how this administration is playing footsie 
with Vladimir Putin, Congress will devote resources to push back 
against the Kremlin's efforts to spread disinformation and destabilize 
our allies, just like they did to the United States during last year's 
election campaign.
  I am hopeful that, as we move forward with next year's spending 
bills, we continue to provide our diplomatic and development efforts 
the support they need and the support they have received under 
Republican and Democratic Presidents alike.
  With the President's proposed cuts, I fear what message we are 
sending to the world. The United States is the global standard bearer 
for freedom, justice, and democracy. If we cede our role as a global 
leader, make no mistake, someone will step into the void. It could very 
well be another power that doesn't share our values or our interests. 
Think Russia or some country like that.
  We cannot allow that to happen. I am committed to ensuring it 
doesn't, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides 
of the aisle to firmly reject President Trump's cuts.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I thank Congressman Engel for all 
of his years of work on behalf of the Nation on the Foreign Affairs 
  I know you may have a busy schedule this evening. We have got about 
12 minutes left, so I thought we would just have a discussion on some 
of these issues. Stick with us if you can.
  Mr. ENGEL. You are doing a fine job.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Mr. Speaker, Congressman Engel mentioned 
maintaining the United States' position as a leader in the world and 
not ceding that to another country, whether it is China or Russia, who 
has been very aggressive, and it is not just maintaining a strong 
  I represent what is known as Military City, USA: San Antonio, Texas. 
Once upon a time we had five military bases in San Antonio. We still 
have Joint Base San Antonio, which is a large operation. So it is not 
just about a strong defense, which we all support, but also about the 
hard work of diplomacy and development.
  The United States, who has been a leader for so long, if we back away 
from our commitments, then we not only cede it to somebody else, but 
there is a good chance that a lot of that work is not going to get 
done, that the peoples in many nations around the world are going to 
become poorer, more desperate; and from that, only bad things can 
happen both for those peoples, but also for the neighboring countries, 
for the United States, and for the world.
  Thank you for lending your strong voice to support for the diplomatic 
  I yield to the gentleman from New York.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I couldn't agree with him more. And, you 
know, it is especially interesting since, during the campaign, 
President Trump attacked the previous administration for not being 
strong enough, for not showing American presence. And now with this 
cut, with this proposed 31 percent cut, I couldn't think of anything 
that would make us weaker or make us unable to do what we need to do.

                              {time}  1845

  So I hope the President remembers what he said during the campaign 
and acts accordingly so that these massive cuts can be taken away.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. No, absolutely. And Congressman Sires, you 
recall that during those months, then-Candidate Trump talked about 
backing away from NATO; about allowing Germany, for example, to handle 
the issues between Russia and the Baltic States; about allowing or 
really forcing Japan and South Korea to go it alone or to develop even 
their own nuclear weapons to combat the threat of North Korea, to deal 
with China's aggressiveness in the South China Sea.
  So the more we go down that road, not only do we abandon those 
nations who have been friends for so long and allies and supporters for 
so long in keeping the peace, but we also, in the long run, threaten 
our own security.
  I yield to the gentleman from New Jersey.
  Mr. SIRES. If I might, I couldn't agree with the gentleman more. Just 
to bring it even closer to home, we recently met with the attorneys 
general from the Northern Triangle. These attorneys general have been 
fighting corruption, have been fighting the cartel. We have assisted 
them with a small amount of money. These people put their lives every 
day in peril fighting the cartel, fighting this corruption.
  In our conversation, they said to me: We need America's support to 
continue our work. If we stop now, all that we have accomplished until 
now is going to go for naught.
  When you are talking about a small amount of money, the strong impact 
that it has on countries that, for decades, have experienced a great 
deal of corruption, and we finally have people that have stepped 
forward and want to fight this corruption and put their lives in peril 
every single day, I think we should support those people. Cutting and 
running away from these people can only hurt us.
  This is just one small example of the impact that this 30 percent cut 
would have on this region.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. The gentleman mentioned the Northern Triangle 
countries of Central America. Especially over the last few years, 
thousands of women and children who are fleeing very desperate 
situations there, not only extreme poverty, but the threats of violence 
by drug gangs, for example, have come to the Texas-Mexico border 
seeking asylum.
  Congress did, over the last few years, essentially, pass assistance 
for these nations. And we understood that, look, if you allocate $600 
million to three countries, that is not going to solve all of their 
problems. Nobody is under that illusion. But it can go a long way in 
being the seed funds to start to turn these things around and these 
nations around.
  Mr. ENGEL. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. I yield to the gentleman from New York.
  Mr. ENGEL. I would add that we give foreign aid, and it is good for 
those countries, but it is also good for us. It also helps us. If there 
is a drug problem in Central America, it inevitably comes up to our 
  If there is some problem with some developing country, say, we have a 
disease that could--Ebola or something like that, and we give money to 
help eradicate it, well, that will prevent Ebola from coming into the 
United States. So it is really a win-win situation.
  Again, if we are going to be the leaders of the world, certainly of 
the free world, and we want other countries to follow our lead, well, 
if you are a leader, you have to lead. What we are doing is in our own 
best interests, not only just in the other countries' best interests.
  I think it is important to say that. And it is important to, again, 
say, 1 percent--1.4 percent of our total budget is all the foreign aid 
and all the money that we give in terms of eradicating diseases, in 
terms of crime, in terms of everything that is actually very important 
to us as well. The American people think it is much higher, but it is 
  So if you take the President's slashing of it, it would virtually 
make all of this impossible to do. So it is a program that is a win-win 
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Congressman Engel, you mentioned Ebola, for 
example. Dallas, Texas, was the first American city to confront the 
challenge and

[[Page H2691]]

the problem of Ebola. So I couldn't agree with you more.
  It should also be said that if you take away this aid and you have 
people becoming more desperate in nations around the world, they do 
become more susceptible to being employed by, for example, drug 
cartels, or being lured by terrorist organizations because these folks 
are desperate and need to survive. So these rogue alternatives become 
more attractive to them.
  So it is important to point out that a lot of this development and a 
lot of this aid also prevents some of these things from happening.
  I yield to the gentleman from New York.
  Mr. ENGEL. Absolutely. Again, I want to reiterate that we are not the 
leaders of the world because we anointed ourselves. We are the leaders 
of the world because we provided leadership for all of these years, 
particularly after World War II, and it is important to engage with the 
  One of the gentlemen mentioned some of the things that the President 
said. You know, one of the things he did was he called NATO obsolete. 
That kind of talk worries me because it is our alliances that are the 
pillar of our foreign policy and the strength of the United States and 
our alliances which have worked so well since World War II.
  So if we denigrate our alliances, and then we cut funding for all 
these programs that help various countries so we can be a leader by 
about a third, that doesn't say much for a robust foreign policy. You 
get to be a leader by acting like a leader, not by pulling away from 
the world.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Absolutely. I will give Mr. Sires the last word. 
I yield to the gentleman from New Jersey.
  Mr. SIRES. Well, before we finish, I just want to compliment Chairman 
Royce and Ranking Member Engel on the recent resolution that we worked 
on together in encouraging Argentina to continue on the path under new 
President Macri. Former President de Kirchner decided that she was 
going to be an isolationist.
  Argentina is too big. It is a country that could be a player in 
assisting us in any crisis that we have in South America. So this 
resolution did not cost any money, but it shows our friendship, it 
shows our support, and it shows that they are moving in the right 
  So my compliments to the gentleman, my compliments to the people that 
signed this resolution.
  Mr. CASTRO of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my