(CNSNews.com) – In an interview Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) warned that there are more terrorists who are capable of attacking the U.S. than there were before 9/11.
“There are more Parises coming until you disrupt this network. There are more terrorist organizations, more safe havens, more capability to hit the homeland than before 9/11,” Graham said, referring to the recent terrorist attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical newspaper that published cartoons about the Prophet Muhammad.
A top leader of al Qaeda in Yemen claimed responsibility for the attack which claimed the lives of 12 people.
Graham said the answer is for the U.S. to form a “regional coalition” to go “underground” and rout the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL), from Syria.
“The answer now is to deny ISIL the safe haven they enjoy in Syria and Iraq, because it is a platform to strike the United States,” he said.
“Get these guys out of Syria,” Graham said. “The current strategy is failing.”
“Everybody has told us on this trip that if you don’t have a no-fly zone, the people we’re training – the Free Syrian Army we’re training – is gonna go back into Syria and get slaughtered by Asad,” he said.
Graham also blamed the president’s policies for the deaths of 300,000 people in Syria.
“I think his policies are getting people killed,” Graham said. “Almost 300,000 people have been killed in Syria on his watch … Letting people out of Gitmo in this environment, I think is irresponsible. So yes, his campaign promises should be adjusted based on reality.”
If the U.S. is successful in removing ISIS from Syria and Iraq, that will reverberate in other areas, specifically in Africa, where the terrorist group Boko Haram has killed up to 2,000 people at a military base in Baga – an attack considered by Amnesty International to be the deadliest massacre in the terrorist group’s five-year insurgency.
“The next stage of the fight, I think, is Africa,” Graham said. “But if we could show some resolve in Syria and Iraq and reset the table and go after these guys in Syria and Iraq with success, I think it would change the landscape throughout the world. Success anywhere breeds success everywhere.”
However, Graham said Boko Haram does not represent the same threat as ISIS or Al-Nusra.