Jul 21 2015

Graham Responds to President Obama on Destruction of ISIL

Contact: Kevin Bishop (864) 250-1417 or Lorcan Connick (202) 224-5972

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made this statement in response to the comments President Obama made in Pittsburgh at the VFW convention about his efforts to destroy ISIL.

President Obama said:

“What we can do and what we are doing is to pound ISIL from the air…but have no doubt we will degrade and ultimately destroy this barbaric terrorist organization.”

Graham responded:

“President Obama’s remarks about the status of his efforts to destroy and degrade ISIL are not grounded in reality. The fact is we do not have a strategy to deal with ISIL’s safe havens in Syria and the aggressive air campaign described by the President will never completely destroy the terrorist group.

“While the president touts imaginary gains against ISIL and other terrorist organizations, the threats against our country continue to grow. It’s past time President Obama abandon his failed strategy and go on the offensive. The stronger we allow ISIL to become over there, the more likely we are to get hit here at home.

“We need more American ground capacity in Iraq to ensure success by the Iraqi security forces. We also must work with regional partners to form a regional army to deal with ISIL’s safe havens in Syria. This too will require limited U.S. military participation.

“The president’s declared statement that ‘Assad must go’ has proven to be nothing more than rhetoric. And until Assad leaves, the Syrian conflict will only grow. But unfortunately for our national security and the region as a whole, at this rate Assad will be in power after President Obama leaves office.”