Cantwell Statement on President Obama’s Nomination of Spokane Native Ryan Crocker as Next U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan

Cantwell: ‘Ambassador Crocker has served his country with distinction and made his home state of Washington proud’

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) issued the following statement regarding President Obama’s nomination of former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan:

“I applaud President Obama for his nomination of Ryan Crocker to be the next United States Ambassador to Afghanistan. Ambassador Crocker has served his country with distinction and made his home state of Washington proud. A Spokane native and Whitman College graduate, Ambassador Crocker has taken on tough challenges representing our country in Middle East and Southwest Asia. Having served as U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon, Kuwait, Syria, Pakistan, and Iraq, he has the necessary experience to move America’s diplomatic efforts forward in Afghanistan at a critical stage in our nation’s strategy.

“I have long said that we cannot achieve greater stability in Afghanistan and more regional participation by military means alone. We need a political and economic approach that stabilizes Afghanistan and deals with the drug trade and massive corruption there, while continuing to draw down U.S. combat forces. I am pleased President Obama is placing a greater emphasis on strengthening diplomatic ties with Afghanistan by nominating an esteemed and highly decorated career diplomat to serve in this important role.”

Note: Senator Cantwell was the lead Senate Sponsor of S. 496, the Afghanistan and Pakistan Reconstruction Opportunity Zones Act of 2009, which was aimed at expanding economic opportunity in those two countries. Senator Cantwell looks forward to continuing her effort during the 112th Congress.