Mr. STUTZMAN. I thank my colleague, Congressman Burton, for his comments.
What a momentous day, as he said, that we can all take courage and to look to the future, but as well as celebrate the ending of a chapter that has caused so much pain and so much fear in the lives of many Americans.
Three weeks after my wife and I had our first born child, our American homeland was attacked by terrorists on September 11, 2001. As I held my baby boy, I knew that I had to do something, and ensuring the future security of my two sons is the reason I ran for the U.S. Congress.
The terrorist attacks on 9/11 tested our security, our defense, and our fortitude in protecting our country, but we have not stood idly by. For nearly 10 years now, our American soldiers have given their lives every day in Operation New Dawn, Operation Enduring Freedom, and now Operation Odyssey Dawn to protect our Nation and to secure justice. Their service demands respect and admiration.
[Time: 19:20] Last night, justice was served. bin Laden has been the leader and the symbol of al Qaeda for more than 20 years, continually plotting attacks against the United States and its allies.
The word ``Qaeda'' means foundation or base. Osama bin Laden was the head of this foundation, the face of terrorism around the world, a foundation upon which its members expected to erect a vigorous, widespread network spreading terror around the world.
Well, folks, we have beheaded their foundation. We have beheaded al Qaeda. And should they continue, we will be glad to bring justice and help them join their leader once again if they so choose.
We must continue to fight. Our third President, Thomas Jefferson, said this: ``Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom.'' We must use our strength and cultivate our relationships with the people around the world to ensure we take a stand against cruel dictatorships, tyranny and radical Islam.
As I work with Congress and military commanders, I will fight to honor those who have died to secure our freedom because they deserve our utmost respect, and we should only be so grateful.
I congratulate the men and the women of our military and intelligence communities who have devoted their lives to this mission. For this, our soldiers have America's boundless gratitude.
I also want to commend and congratulate President Obama and President Bush for their determination and their willingness to continue the fight, to pursue Osama bin Laden, who has been the eluding terrorist, the face of terrorism around this world. And today, freedom has been victorious.
I am honored to represent the people of Indiana's Third District and am proud of Indiana's 14,700 members of the Indiana Army and Air National Guard. It is the dedication of these men and women and their families who have brought the leader of al Qaeda to justice and will continue to bring justice to those who seek to destroy freedom and destroy America.
As Winston Churchill once said: We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.
So, Mr. Speaker, today is one of those days that I didn't know that I would ever see, but stand here knowing that we have been victorious, but also know that the fight in front of us is not over with; that we will continue to be vigilant; that we will support our troops, our men and our women, our Commander-in-Chief in this fight on terrorism.