WASHINGTON, D.C. — Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told reporters that he's satisfied with the slaying of the top al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri after a military action ordered by President Joe Biden. Still, Graham said he wants more.
"It's beyond brazen that he would be living in a house of the Minister of Interior," said Graham. "So, my advice would be to move assets forward, get countries in the region who would not benefit from an al-Qaeda rise, and start hitting the training camps."
“What unnerves me is that al-Zawahiri felt comfortable enough being out in the open in the Kabul area after the Taliban takeover. So much for the Taliban rejecting al Qaeda," Graham tweeted on Monday evening. "This is proof positive that Afghanistan has once again become a safe haven for international terrorists."
Graham opposed the withdrawal of American soldiers from Afghanistan as "irresponsible."
"A full withdrawal from Afghanistan is dumber than dirt and devilishly dangerous. President Biden will have, in essence, canceled an insurance policy against another 9/11," Graham said in a statement last year.
After this action, Graham implied that he thinks the United States will see terrorist attacks in the United States.
"While we celebrate this operation, we must understand that terrorist groups are getting stronger in Afghanistan under Taliban control, presenting a direct threat to the American homeland," Graham continued. "We better batten down the hatches, because as they get stronger over there, we are more exposed here at home."
Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) told Raw Story that one thing that is not being discussed is that the Taliban violated their agreement with former President Donald Trump not to be a safe haven for terrorists.
In the final year of his presidency, Trump built an agreement with the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, and the first provision of the agreed-upon declaration said, "A comprehensive and sustainable peace agreement will include four parts: 1) guarantees to prevent the use of Afghan soil by any international terrorist groups or individuals against the security of the United States and its allies..."
"The Taliban must respect the agreement, specifically regarding their promises of severing ties with terrorists," former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a 2020 speech about the U.S. demands in the peace agreement. "We have our deep counterterrorism interest there, making sure that the homeland is never attacked. It's one of the central underpinnings of what President Trump has laid before us."
As Menendez explained, "you can't have al-Zawahiri, No. 1 al-Qaeda residing in the Capitol city and say you didn't know it. So, we have to treat the Taliban as what they are: allowing al-Qaeda elements to be in their country."
Matt Laslo contributed to this report.