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Sen. Paul Addresses Cadets at The Citadel

November 12, 2013 in Politics & Elections

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sen. Rand Paul today spoke to cadets at The Citadel in Charleston, S.C. Below is text prepared for delivery and video of his address.


It is an honor to be with you here today at the Citadel.

Gen. Rosa, thank you for this opportunity. I would also like to acknowledge Lt. Gen. Mike Steele, Chairman of The Citadel’s Board of Visitors. And thanks to Cadet Colonel Colin Hicks, the Regimental Commander, for his leadership of the Corps of Cadets.

Some of you may one day be called to defend your country. If you choose to serve, it will be willingly, as a volunteer. Our military is second to none and much of that excellence stems from having professionals who serve voluntarily. Since 1842, Cadets at The Citadel have answered their nation’s calling. Of last year’s class, fully 40 percent accepted commissions into the Armed Forces.

They will serve bravely and with purpose. They follow in the footsteps of graduates like Col. Myron Harrington, US Marine Corps, retired, Citadel class of 1960.[1] In 1968 during the Tet Offensive, Col. Harrington led a courageous assault against a heavily fortified enemy stronghold in Hue City. [2]

Disregarding extreme personal danger, he led his Marines in overrunning the entrenched enemy position. For that action, Col. Harrington received the Navy Cross, the nation’s second highest military award for valor in combat.[3] Col. Harrington is with us today. I would like to thank him for his service to our nation.[4]

Those of us in Washington who must make the decision to go to war owe you something, something that has been lacking in recent years. We owe you a full and proper consideration of the pros and cons of war.

We owe it to you to follow our Constitution and for Congress to debate and authorize all wars.

We owe it to you to clearly show our national interest before we go to war. We owe it to you to have a sound strategy, an achievable goal, and most of all, an exit plan so we aren’t stuck in quagmires for decades on end.

And above all, …read more


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