Murkowski to PACOM Head: “Location, Location, Location”
Senator Stresses ALCOM’s Key Role in Pacific Strategy in Meeting with Commander
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski today met Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, U.S. Navy, Commander of the Pacific Command (PACOM) on the eve of a classified briefing before the U.S. Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee on which Murkowski sits. The two shared their opinions on the dangers facing the United States from the Pacific-Asia region, with the Senator stressing Alaska’s geographic advantage in dealing with the Pentagon’s new priority area.
“I was pleased to have a few moments with Admiral Locklear in a more casual environment to offer my perspective on Alaska’s military role,” said Murkowski afterwards. “My perspective was predictable but clear: if the military’s new focus is the Pacific, Alaska has more Pacific coastline than any other state. What’s true in real estate is true in military operations: it’s location, location, location.”
When asked what country posed the greatest threat, Admiral Locklear shared his concerns over North Korea’s armament, political uncertainty and new leadership. Senator Murkowski responded that Alaskans are very aware that they are within range of air threats from North Korea and appreciate the presence of Fort Greeley’s missile defense capabilities.
(Senator Lisa Murkowski with Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III)
Admiral Locklear also indicated a preliminary level of support for Alaska’s military capacity, saying that he sees the critical role Alaska plays for both PACOM and NORTHCOM interests – adding that he looks forward to touring Alaska’s military outposts in the near future.