The following is the statement Congressman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) delivered today on the floor of the House: 

“Mr. Speaker, I rise today to extend my deepest condolences to the family of Sergeant First Class Mark Wayne Jackson who was killed in a bomb blast yesterday in Zamboanga, Philippines.  He died while advancing freedom, peace and stability in the Philippines and his family should be proud of his service and his work on behalf of the American people. 

“Sergeant Jackson, part of the 1st Special Forces Group at Fort Lewis, WA, was on the front lines of the global war against terrorism.  He served as a member of a U.S. force deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, helping to train the Philippine military to fight the Abu Sayyaf terrorist organization more effectively.  He will be remembered as one of our finest young Americans and he gave his life so that people throughout the world could be safer and more secure.

“I strongly condemn the cowardly terrorists who committed this act.  The Abu Sayyaf, who has been blamed for the attack, has been consistently linked to Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda network.  They represent a clear threat to America and we will continue the global campaign to uproot the terrorist cells and bring them to justice.  Through the efforts of the courageous and dedicated men and women in our armed forces, I am confident that we will prevail in this fight.”