If the United States pulls its troops completely out of Afghanistan, there "will be another 9/11," even if President Donald Trump does manage to get a peace deal with the Taliban, Sen. Lindsey Graham warned Tuesday.
"You may be tired of fighting radical Islam," the South Carolina Republican said on Fox News' "Fox and Friends." "They are not tired of fighting you...there is no substitute for American forces in Afghanistan to protect the American homeland from radical Islam. There will be another 9/11 if we pull the plug. If you don't believe me, ask the generals in the intelligence community."
Graham said he has spoken with Trump, and he applauds him for trying to lower costs by attempting to end the war in Afghanistan. He also thinks the president has done a good job hurting the Taliban, but at the same time, "you can't trust the Taliban to take care of ISIS and Al Qaida."
The U.S. and the Taliban to be nearing an agreement under which U.S. forces would withdraw in exchange for guarantees that Afghanistan would not be a haven for terrorist groups, according to reports.
Graham said he believes "under 10,000 U.S. troops should remain in Afghanistan until Al Qaida and ISIS can no longer enjoy a safe haven.
"Our security is not based on the day we leave, but what we leave behind," said Graham. "We still have troops in South Korea. We still have troops in Japan and Germany."
Graham said Trump understands the need for a counterterrorism force, as the two terrorist groups will "never be part of a peace deal."
"I like President Trump's foreign policy," said Graham. "He is frustrated about the war but 18 years ago...this is where the 9/11 plot was hatched and planned. When the Taliban took over, invited Al Qaida to be their honored guests."
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