Tags: lindsey graham | niger | 911 | terrorism

Lindsey Graham: 'We Don't Want the Next 9/11 to Come From Niger'

Lindsey Graham: 'We Don't Want the Next 9/11 to Come From Niger'
Sen. Lindsey Graham (Ron Sachs/AP)

By    |   Friday, 20 October 2017 04:48 PM

Sen. Lindsey Graham said Friday that the deaths of four Green Berets this month proved that war on terrorism was "getting hot in places where it has been cool" and that "we don't want the next 9/11 to come from Niger."

"The war is morphing," the South Carolina Republican, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told reporters at the Capitol. "We're going to see more actions in Africa, not less.

"You're going to see more aggression by the United States towards our enemies, not less," he added. "If you find somebody who is a member of a terrorist organization, then we can use lethal force.

"They don't have to present an immediate threat."

Graham talked to reporters after meeting with Defense Secretary James Mattis and Armed Services Chairman John McCain, the Arizona Republican, on the Oct. 4 deaths of the Army soldiers from an ambush by Islamic State terrorists in the West African country.

"I am so sorry these four men died in operations," he later said. "They died in the defense of America.

"This war is getting hot in places where it has been cool. We've got to go where the enemy takes us.

"Most Americans want to do the following: With the threats to us and our allies, they want us to deal with it.

"They don't want another 9/11," Graham said. "We don't want the next 9/11 to come from Niger."

McCain has called for a probe into the deaths and has threatened to subpoena witnesses if the White House fails to cooperate.

Graham, a former 2016 GOP presidential candidate, told reporters that counterterrorism efforts under former President Barack Obama "were too restrictive" and "denied us the ability to engage the enemy effectively and aggressively.

"The war is headed to Africa," Graham said. "It's beginning to morph as we suppress the enemy in the Middle East.

"They're going to move. They're not going to quit.

"We're going to build on what president Obama did in some of these countries," he said. "We're probably going to go to other places because that's where the enemy is taking us.

"We're going to be more aggressive."

As such, Graham said, President Donald Trump, as commander-in-chief, determines "who falls in the category of being a threat to the United States and what military response is needed to meet that threat."

But Congress must "have oversight over these operations," the senator added. "If we don't like what they're doing, then we can cut off funding.

"But for us to make that decision, we've got to know what you're doing."

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Sen. Lindsey Graham said Friday that the deaths of four Green Berets this month proved that war on terrorism was "getting hot in places where it has been cool" and that "we don't want the next 9/11 to come from Niger."
lindsey graham, niger, 911, terrorism
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2017-48-20
Friday, 20 October 2017 04:48 PM
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