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Cotton Honors 36th Anniversary of the Beirut Bombing on the Senate Floor

October 23, 2019

Thirty-six years ago this week, an Iranian suicide bomber detonated thousands of pounds of explosives inside a Marine compound in Beirut, Lebanon.

So terrible was the blast that 15 miles out at sea, Marines aboard the USS Iwo Jima could see black smoke building over Beirut like an ominous storm cloud.

The devastating attack claimed the lives of 241 Americans who were bravely keeping the peace in a country wracked by violence. A separate blast claimed the lives of 58 of our French allies.

This anniversary is a sobering reminder that freedom comes at a price-a price too often paid by brave Americans in uniform. In Beirut, it was 220 Marines, 18 sailors, and three soldiers. As a memorial to their valor, Madame President, I ask consent to include their names in the record following my remarks.