Chairman INOUYE: I believe during the past week, we have participated in creating and developing, very likely, a new American hero. Like you, who as one has felt the burning sting of bullet and shrapnel and heard the unforgettable and frightening sounds of incoming shells, I salute you, sir, as a fellow combat man. And the rows of ribbons that you have on your chest will forever remind us of your courageous service and your willingness—your patriotic willingness to risk your life and your limb. I am certain the life and burdens of a hero will be difficult and heavy, and so, with all sincerity, I wish you well as you begin your journey into a new life.

However, as an interested observer, and as one who has participated in the making of this new American hero, I found certain aspects of your testimony to be most troubling. Chairman Hamilton has most eloquently discussed them. Because, as a result of your very gallant presence, and your articulate statements, your life, I am certain, will be emulated by many, many young Americans. I am certain we will, all of us, receive an abundance of requests from young citizens throughout the land for entrance into the privileged ranks of cadets of the Military Services.

These young citizens, having been imbued with the passion of patriotism, will do so; and to these young men and women, I wish to address a few words.

In 1964, when Colonel North was a cadet, he took an oath of office like all hundreds throughout the service academies. And he also said that he will abide with the regulations which set forth the cadet honor concept. The first honor concept, first because it is so important, over and above all others, is a very simple one: A member of the brigade does not lie, cheat, or steal. And in this regulation of 1964, the word "lie" was defined as follows: "A deliberate oral or written untruth; it may be an oral or written statement which is known to be false or simple response to a question in which the answer is known to be false.' The words "mislead" or "deceive" were defined as follows: "A deliberate misrepresentation of a true situation by being untruthful or withholding or omitting or subtly wording information in such a way as to leave an erroneous or false impression of the known true situation."

And when the Colonel put on his uniform and the bars of a Second Lieutenant, he was well aware that he was subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice. It is a special code of laws that apply to our men and women in uniform. It is a code that has been applicable to the conduct and activities of Colonel North throughout his military career, and even at this moment. And that code makes it abundantly clear that orders of a superior officer must be obeyed by subordinate members. But it is lawful orders.

The uniform code makes it abundantly clear that it must be the lawful orders of a superior officer.

In fact, it says, "Members of the military have an obligation to disobey unlawful orders."

This principle was considered so important that we, we the Government of the United States, proposed that it be internationally applied in the Nuremberg trials and so in the Nuremberg trials, we said that the fact that the defendant—

Mr. SULLIVAN: Mr. Chairman, may I please register an objection. I find this offensive. I find you are engaging in a personal attack on Colonel North and you are far removed from the issues of this case. To make reference refer to the Nuremberg trials, I find personally and professionally distasteful, and I can no longer sit here and listen to this.

Chairman INOUYE: You will have to sit there if you want to listen.

Mr. SULLIVAN: Mr. Chairman, please don't conclude these hearings on this unfair note. I have strong objections to many things in the hearings and you up there speak about listening to the American people. Why don't you listen to the American people and what they have said as a result of the last week? There are 20,000 telegrams in our room outside the corridor here that came in this morning. The American people have spoken and please stop this personal attack against Colonel North.

Chairman INOUYE: I have sat here listened to the Colonel without interrupting. I hope you will accord me the courtesy of saying my piece.

Mr. SULLIVAN: You may give speeches on the issues, it seems to me; you may ask questions. But you may not attack him personally. This has gone to far in my opinion.

Chairman INOUYE: I am not attacking him personally.

Mr. SULLIVAN: That is the way I hear it, sir.

Chairman INOUYE: Colonel North, I am certain it must have been painful for you as you stated to testify that you lied to senior officials of our government, that you lied and misled our Congress and believe me it was painful for all of us to sit here and listen to that testimony. It was painful.

It was equally painful to learn from your testimony that you lied and misled because of what you believed to be a just cause, supporters of Nicaraguan Freedom Fighters, the Contras. You have eloquently articulated your opposition to Marxism and communism. And I believe that all of us, I am certain all of us on this panel, are equally opposed to Marxism and communism. But should we in the defense of democracy adopt and embrace one of the most important tenets of communism and Marxism: the ends justify the means?

This is not one of the commandments of democracy. Our government is not a government of men, it is still a government of laws. And finally, to those thousands upon thousands of citizens who have called, sent telegrams, and written letters. I wish to thank all of you most sincerely and commend you for your demonstrated interest in the well being of our government, of our freedoms, and our democracy.

Your support or opposition of what is happening in this room is important, important because it dramatically demonstrates the strength of this democracy.

We Americans are confident in our strength to openly and without fear put into action one of the important teachings of our greatest Founding Father, Thomas Jefferson, who spoke of the right to dissent, the right to criticize the leaders of this government and he said, "The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions that I wish it to be always kept alive. It will often be exercised when wrong, but better so than not to be exercised at all."