Madam Speaker, the chief politicai expert and chief military expert for the U.S. before us in the FA committee. Despite the cynics, critics, and defeatists, who want there to be bad news, General Petraeus informed Congress that military progress is being made.

Our job is not over in Iraq. It is in the best interest of America to finish our mission. War is hard, but retreat and a unilateral withdrawal is a plan for another Vietnam failure. Abandonment is what our enemy wants but not what we will give them.

General Petraeus testified that substantial progress has been made by our forces and the Iraqi counterparts since the surge began in mid-June. According to the General, the security situation in Iraq is improving, while the Iraqi government continues to assume more responsibility in the political reconciliation of the country.

Despite the progress being made, nay-sayers continue to undermine the momentum that is building in Iraq for a peaceful reconciliation. Of course there is more work to be done before we can see real success in Iraq. In fact, that is exactly why we can't walk away from this war. Iraq has become the most foremost front in the war against radical Islam. The strategy of Islamic militants assumes an American withdrawal. They believe we will grow weary of fighting for liberty and freedom abroad and that we will walk away from our commitments in Iraq. If success in Iraq is the goal, nay-sayers have to understand that giving up is simply not an option. Withdrawal will only embolden our enemies. We've got to fight them where they are and show them that we mean business. This is the time for America to stand strong and stay focused on our mission. The whole world is watching us.

And that's just the way it is.