Support our Kurdish allies against ISIS!

The Kurds are the boots on the ground against ISIS - let's get them the weapons they need.

I am writing you to urge you to sponsor House Resolution 1654, which would authorize the President of the United States to directly provide defense articles, defense services, and related training to the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), one of America?s most steadfast and loyal allies in the Middle East.

The KRG, led by its brave Peshmerga forces, has served as the tip of the spear in the existential battle against the Islamic State (IS). In March 2015, the UN issued a report documenting, in gruesome details, mass murders, torture, rape and sexual assault (even of children as young as six) by IS, and its brutal, targeted efforts to eradicate entire religious communities, including Yezidi and Christian communities. More must be done to support our Kurdish allies if they are to degrade and ultimately destroy this genocidal enemy that threatens the very foundations of modern, democratic society.

Our Kurdish allies are bravely confronting IS, but are badly outgunned by the enemy. In June 2014, IS terrorists captured millions of dollars in sophisticated US-made weaponry and equipment. Overnight, IS became the most well-equipped, well-funded terrorist organization on Earth. Conversely, the Kurdish Peshmerga are equipped with light weapons, very few armored vehicles, and virtually no specialized bomb-defusing equipment or training.

Faced with an enemy that holds vastly superior US weaponry, as of April over 1,200 Peshmerga and Kurdish security forces have been killed, with another 5,600 injured. Weapons and equipment designated for the Peshmerga, but routed through Baghdad, have been delayed or have not reached their intended destination. It is critical that the US, without delay, directly provide our close ally the weapons and equipment it needs to effectively fight this brutal enemy.

The US should also increase its humanitarian assistance to the KRG. The KRG now hosts over 1.6 million refugees from Syria and displaced Iraqis, including some 900,000 Christians, Yezidis, and other religious and ethnic minorities. However, the influx of refugees and IDPs has stretched the KRGs resources to its limits and the government now struggles to meet their most basic needs. The UN has designated the humanitarian crisis in Kurdistan a ?Level 3 Emergency?, its highest rating. As IS continues its reign of terror with no immediate end in sight, I implore you to provide additional funds for humanitarian assistance.

As your constituent, I ask that you support our Kurdish allies by becoming a co-sponsor and approving the bipartisan legislation H.Res. 1654, led by Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Ed Royce and Ranking Member Eliot Engel, which authorizes the provision of heavy equipment and weaponry directly to the KRG. As our allies continue to serve bravely as our boots on the ground, we owe them the necessary equipment to effectively combat our common enemy.

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