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Published On: Wed, Mar 20th, 2013

Senator Lindsey Graham calls for sending American soldiers in Syria

With reports of chemical weapons being used in Syria, war drums are beating loud once again in Washington DC, with Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and John McCain (R-AZ) sitting behind the drim kit.

In a joint statement Tuesday, the duo calls on President Obama to act against Syrian President Bashir al-Assad:

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“We are extremely disturbed by reports that chemical weapons have been used today in Syria. President Obama has said that the use of weapons of mass destruction by Bashar Assad is a ‘red line’ for him that ‘will have consequences.’ If today’s reports are substantiated, the President’s red line has been crossed, and we would urge him to take immediate action to impose the consequences he has promised. That should include the provision of arms to vetted Syrian opposition groups, targeted strikes against Assad’s aircraft and SCUD missile batteries on the ground, and the establishment of safe zones inside Syria to protect civilians and opposition groups. If today’s reports are substantiated, the tragic irony will be that these are the exact same actions that could have prevented the use of weapons of mass destruction in Syria.

“It is imperative that the Administration come up with a plan to secure the chemical weapons sites in a post-Assad Syria.  We cannot imagine a more volatile scenario for the Mideast and our own national security than to have these chemical weapons caches fall into radical Islamist hands.  We need to take this threat seriously and time is not on our side.”

In fact, in an interview with Josh Rogin in Foreign Policy, Senator Graham is asked about sending US troops inside Syria.

Graham said, “Absolutely, you’ve got to get on the ground. There is no substitute for securing these weapons,” he said. “I don’t care what it takes. We need partners in the region. But I’m here to say, if the choice is to send in troops to secure the weapons sites versus allowing chemical weapons to get in the hands of some of the most violent people in the world, I vote to cut this off before it becomes a problem.”

 The US ambassador to Syria, Robert Ford, told the House Foreign Affairs Committee today, “So far we have no evidence to substantiate the reports that chemical weapons were used yesterday.”

However, Graham doesn’t need confirmation of the use of chemical weapons, he told Foreign Policy, and says we must still take action:

“I can confirm the fact that the chemical weapons are all over Syria and if somebody doesn’t plan how to secure these weapons they are going to work their way back to the U.S. and around the world, that I can promise you,” he said. “If there was a chemical weapons attack today, that is a change in the conducting of the war and it should remind us what’s available in Syria and what would we risk as a nation if these weapons fall into the wrong hands. And they are going to and somebody has to do something about it and that somebody has to be us.”

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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