PREVENTING TERRORISM -- HON. LEE H. HAMILTON (Extension of Remarks - May 03, 1995)

[Page: E938]



in the House of Representatives


All of us are filled with deep sorrow and anger over the terrorist bombing in Oklahoma City. This brutal tragedy is particularly frightening because it brought terrorism to the nation's heartland.

At the same time, it is inspiring to see the valiant rescue workers and united community spirit as Americans from across the country assist in relief efforts. No country is stronger or more open-hearted in times of crisis. We should also be proud of the remarkable speed of law enforcement officers in arresting suspects and tracing the origins of the crime.

The consequences of these events will be with us for many years. Not least is that the personal insecurity Americans have felt from random violence and crime will now be increased. Americans are worried about terrorism, but much more worried that it could hit close to them.

Unfortunately, terrorism cannot be stopped simply by catching criminals after a bomb explodes. We must reexamine and intensify our efforts to prevent terrorism.

Immediate Action: There is widespread consensus in Congress to take swift action to give the government enhanced powers to fight terrorism. Congress will quickly pass counterterrorism legislation. It is expected to include:

Law Enforcement: A central counterterrorist task force will be created to coordinate the efforts of different agencies. The President has requested 1,000 additional agents and prosecutors for this effort, which will be focused more on intelligence and prevention than law enforcement.