Congressman addresses military issues

By Gabriel Monte: Freedom New Mexico

The chairman of a House committee that approves funding for the military said Wednesday that Cannon Air Force Base’s future as a special operations wing is secure because of unconventional forces such as al-Qaida.

U.S. Rep. Silvestre Reyes, D-Texas, said special operations will remain the preferred way to take on insurgents in Afghanistan and Iraq, and even modern-day pirates who operate off the African coast.

“From a military viewpoint, it makes more sense to have more and more of the special operations capabilities to take on those threats,” said Reyes, head of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

Reyes, who represents the 16th Congressional district, which covers El Paso and the surrounding areas, met with more than a dozen community leaders and business owners to discuss military affairs.

Reyes was also campaigning in New Mexico on behalf of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

“It was a meet and greet event for the congressman and to hear interest on Cannon Air Force Base,” said ENMR-Plateau director of economic development and government relations Raymond Mondragon, who introduced Reyes to the group at the Clovis/Curry County Chamber of Commerce’s Business Enterprise Center.