WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, released the following statement tonight on President Obama's speech on the terrorist organization Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL):
"I remain adamantly opposed to returning American combat troops to battlegrounds in the Middle East, but I believe the President's counterterrorism strategy outlined tonight makes sense and stands in stark contrast to the previous wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"ISIL has barbarically killed and tortured innocent civilians, including Americans. There currently does not exist a more extreme terrorist group than ISIL, and they are well funded, well armed, and have no intention of stopping until their goals are realized.
"Assembling an international coalition to destroy ISIL through air power and the training of partner forces is a pragmatic and powerful approach. I'm encouraged that President Obama has insisted on support from Arab allies and that Iraq form a more inclusive regime that is representative of all its people. These elements are critical to destroying ISIL and to ensuring the United States does not become entangled in another decade-long-war in the Middle East."