Thank you, Madam Chair. Admiral Faller, it’s good to see you again.
SOUTHCOM is an extremely important area of operations that frequently does not get the priority it deserves because of conflicts in other areas of the world. It has been, and will continue to be, a priority of mine.
The crisis on our southern border is just the most recent reminder of how critically important the region is to the security of our own country.
I have seen for myself on many visits to the border and to the region that this is not a new problem we are trying to solve.
We have tried many times to address the reasons why people decide to make the dangerous journey from Central America to the United States.
Despite well-meaning efforts going back decades, we’ve not found the right formula for lasting success. And, unfortunately, some of the changes made by the previous administration to stem the flow of migration have now been reversed.
I hope this Administration will consult with our partners in the region, as well as this Committee, to understand the lessons that have been learned in the past to ensure that our efforts produce better results this time.
I look forward to your views on other pressing challenges, including China’s growing influence in the region.
I also hope you can speak to some of our successes in your area of responsibility, including expanding and deepening our key partnerships in the region – such as with Costa Rica and Colombia.
This hearing is typically classified so that we can gather the full picture of what is going on in the region. While this hearing today is open to the public, I hope it will not prevent you from giving us full answers.
I encourage you to provide classified responses in writing if you can’t respond to the questions Members ask today.
Thank you again for your service, and I look forward to your testimony.
Go to Source