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Published On: Mon, Sep 12th, 2011

Lindsey Graham says President Obama’s plan to leave 3,000 troops in Iraq a ‘disaster’

Sen. Lindsey Graham said on Monday that if the White House supports a plan reportedly under consideration to keep just 3,000 troops in Iraq, it would stand as “one of the biggest blunders in American foreign policy.”

Lindsey Graham 2006 portrait photo

Lindsey Graham 2006 portrait photo

The South Carolina Republican appeared on “Fox and Friends” and stated that if President Barack Obama does choose to drop the number of U.S. troops in Iraq down to 3,000 next year, the decision would likely prove disastrous.

“It would be one of the biggest blunders in American foreign policy to lose Iraq because you had 3,000 troops when you need 10 to 15 [thousand],” said Graham, who serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Last week, Fox News reported the plan for 3,000 troops had already been approved, but White House spokesman Jay Carney flatly denied that. Then the New York Times reported the final decision had not been made but that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta backed the plan to keep a small force in Iraq next year.

Graham said 3,000 troops is not enough to do the missions necessary to protect American civilians, gather intelligence and do counterterrorism work on the ground.

“No general has suggested anywhere near 3,000 troops,” Graham said. “It’s okay as commander in chief to disagree with the generals, but it’s not okay to take their advice and throw it in the garbage can. No one has suggested anything really from the Pentagon below 15 to 16,000.”

Graham slammed the president for considering the reported proposal, calling it a “formula for disaster.”

“It wasn’t an option presented to the president,” he said. “It was an option created by the president. This is the Obama-Biden plan in Afghanistan, and 3,000 troops in Iraq would be a formula for disaster — and Iran would love that. They’re trying to destabilize Iraq.”

Supporting the plan “would be a political decision,” Graham said.

Graham also noted that Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the Intelligence Committee chair, called 3,000 troops in Iraq “woefully inadequate.”

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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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