Video archive of the US Congress

House Proceeding on Jun 25th, 2009 :: 2:54:40 to 2:58:35
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Elijah E. Cummings

2:54:34 to 2:54:54( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: the clerk: will designate the amendment. does the gentleman from maryland seek to offer an amendment? mr. amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 24, printed in house report n 111-182, offered by mr. cummings of maryland. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 572, the gentleman from maryland, mr. cumming and a member opposed, each will control five minutes.

Elijah E. Cummings

2:54:40 to 2:58:35( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Elijah E. Cummings

Elijah E. Cummings

2:54:55 to 2:55:15( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland. mr. cummings: thank you very much, mr. chairman. i extend myeep thanks to airman skelton for working so closely with me on this amendment and i applaud his leadership of the armed sr. visses committee. -- services committee. as chairman of the subcommittee on maritime and transportation, i convened two hearings to

Elijah E. Cummings

2:55:16 to 2:55:36( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: examin maritime piracy including one in maine after two u.s. flag vessels, the mass alabama and liberty sun both of which were carrying u.s. food aid were attacked by somali pie lats. the attack against the alabama left the american captain hostage to the pirates.

Elijah E. Cummings

2:55:37 to 2:55:59( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: he was freed only the decisive intervention of u.s. military forces. incidents of piracy in the horn of africa region are increasing. according to the intentional maritime bureau in 2008, there were 111 actual and attempted somali pirate attacks resulting

Elijah E. Cummings

2:56:00 to 2:56:20( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: in the hydrogenings -- hijks of 42 vessels. by mid may of this year, there had already been 114 actual and attempted somali pirate attacks resulting in 29 successful hijas. nonetheless despite the obvious threat to the united states mariners, department of defense has been inexpleckably reluctant to directly secure

Elijah E. Cummings

2:56:21 to 2:56:41( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: u.s. flag vesselsransiting the horn of africa region. even when they are carrying government-owned cargos. while i have no doubt that our military would respond immediately if another u.s. flag vessel is attacked, the timeliness of their response could be hindered if navy assets are far from the scene. further, it's truly preferable to prevent an incidents from

Elijah E. Cummings

2:56:42 to 2:57:02( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: occurring rather than respond to a hostage situation. however the d.o.d. has repeatedly argued including in testimony before my subcommittee that the area in which the pirates operate is so vast the ny simply cannot prevent every attack by conducting patrols and the vessels should protect themselves.

Elijah E. Cummings

2:57:03 to 2:57:23( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: this perspective assumes that the only wayhe military can protect merchant shipping from pirates is to stage vessels across the entire million square mile theater of operations. frankly, there are other ways to protect our merchant fleet. united states maritime administration estimates that approximately 54 u.s. flag vessels transit the horn of africa region during the course

Elijah E. Cummings

2:57:24 to 2:57:44( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: of the year. of these about 40 will carry u.s. government food aid, cargos, and 44 have the ability to carry u.s. military cargo. only a handful of these vessels are estimated to be at serious risk of attack by pirates due to their operating characteristics. given these figures, my amendment would require the

Elijah E. Cummings

2:57:45 to 2:58:05( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: department of defense to embark military security personnel on u.s. flag messles carrying united states government cargos when they transit pirate invested -- infested waters if they are deemed to be at risk of being boarded by pirates. mr. chairman, the maritime -- u.s. maritime labor unions collectively testified before

Elijah E. Cummings

2:58:06 to 2:58:26( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: my subcommittee in support of the immediate provision to u.s. flag vessels by the government of the force protection necessary to protect any -- prevent any further acts of piracy against them. in keeping with that position, the transportation department of afl-cio, the marine engineers beneficial society, and others support this

Elijah E. Cummings

2:58:27 to 2:58:35( Edit History Discussion )

Elijah E. Cummings: legislation. the maritime unions also wrote in their testimony when a vessel flies a united states flag, it becomes an extension of the united states itself

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