Not four hours after a strong earthquake rocked the San Francisco Bay Area on Sunday, Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona) used it as a contrasting example in explaining the rise of the terror group the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS or ISIL).
“The president has to understand that America must lead and, when American hasn’t, a lot of bad things happen,” McCain said on “Fox News Sunday.”
“This is not like the earthquake in San Francisco. All of this could have been avoided, like leaving a residual behind force in Iraq, and obviously the challenge is now much greater than it would have been.”
The Obama administration hinted at a broader campaign against ISIS last week, after the terrorist group brutally executed American journalist James Foley.
Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser to President Barack Obama, suggested on Friday the administration was weighing strikes against ISIS in Syria. Rhodes’ comments came a day after Secretary of Defence Chuck Hagel called the threat posed by ISIS “imminent” and like “nothing we’ve seen.”
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina), who typically aligns with McCain on matters of foreign policy, said on CNN Sunday that the group is now the “most prominent terrorist organisation in the world.”
McCain said he wasn’t sure if Obama would broaden the offensive against ISIS, but he sounded hopeful.
“I don’t think his advisers would be that far out front if they didn’t have some confidence,” McCain said. “One hopes that … it is a precursor to the president making an announcement of a new approach.”
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