GOP senators line up to bash Obama foreign policy

McClatchy Washington BureauJune 19, 2014 

It was bash Obama Foreign Policy Thursday in the Senate as Republican lawmakers took turns on the chamber floor this morning thematically criticizing President Barack’s handling of international matters from the current eroding situation in Iraq to U.S. troop withdrawal in Afghanistan to efforts to shutter Guantanamo Bay.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., led off the roast in his morning remarks portraying Obama as a dovish reluctant warrior who ‘has weakened the national security posture of the United States’ to the point that ‘he is likely to leave the next president with daunting security problems to solve.’

‘Historians will note that President Obama’s national security policy has been noteworthy for its adherence to consistent objectives: drawing down our conventional and nuclear forces, withdrawing from Iraq and Afghanistan, surrendering the tools necessary to fight the war on terror, and placing substantial trust in international organizations and diplomacy,’ McConnell said on the Senate floor.

He added that Obama ‘has always been a reluctant Commander-in-Chief.’

‘It seems he’s always seen things quite differently,’ McConnell said.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., took to the floor to advocate U.S. air strikes aided by logistical support on the ground in Iraq to counter insurgents. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s government has requested U.S. air support. The only thing Obama has ruled out is sending a large force of U.S. troops back to Iraq.

‘Let me make it clear, no one that I know wants to send combat troops on the ground but air strikes are an important factor, psychologically and many other ways, and that can require some forward air controllers and some special forces,’ McCain said.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., McCain’s hawkish ally, followed and asserted that ‘President Obama’s going back to a pre-9/11 mentality’ with the troop withdrawals in Iraq and Afghanistan.

‘Mr. President, recalculate your decision on Afghanistan,’ Graham said. ‘If you pull all our troops out, the Taliban will regroup, the Afghan army will meet a terrible fate and the people who wish us harm will be coming back our way.’

He added: ‘Mr. President, your job is to protect us. You’re destroying the lines of defenses that exist.’



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