Washington, DC – House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-MO) and five Congressional colleagues spent Thanksgiving with U.S. troops in Afghanistan. 

  Skelton led a six-member bipartisan delegation from U.S. House of Representatives which included Congressman Solomon Ortiz (D-TX), Congressman Rick Larsen (D-WA), Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA), Congresswoman Madeleine Bordallo (D-GU), and Congressman David Loebsack (D-IA).

 “As Americans gather together to give thanks for our blessings, we cannot forget the thousands of Americans in uniform who will miss being at home with family and friends because they are serving our country.  Our nation owes so much to U.S. service members, and spending the Thanksgiving holiday with these dedicated men and women means a lot to me,” said Skelton.
 While in Afghanistan, Skelton met with members of the Missouri National Guard who are working as agricultural advisors with the Afghanistan Agribusiness Development Team. 
 “I am so proud of the Missouri National Guard and the efforts they are making to help the people of Afghanistan create markets for their farm production.  With Afghans and Americans working together, farmer to farmer, I am hopeful that we can make real contributions to sustainable business development in Afghanistan,” said Skelton.

 En route to Afghanistan, the delegation also met with General David Petraeus, Commander of the United States Central Command, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. 
 “Our troops are doing amazing things with limited resources. It remains clear to me that, in order to win in Afghanistan, we will need more troops and more civilian resources. I look forward to working with the new administration and our military commanders to accomplish this,” said Skelton.