A number of neoconservative Republicans spent part of the Memorial Day weekend roundly criticizing the plan announced by President Obama to limit the scope and eventually end the war on terror that was declared by President George W. Bush after the 9/11 attacks. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.; pictured) called the president "tone deaf" to national security needs.
"At a time we need resolve the most, we are sounding retreat." Graham said on Fox News Sunday. A strong supporter of the use of unmanned bombers for strikes on selected targets, Graham criticized the president's statement in his speech at the National Defense University May 23 that stricter guidelines and more oversight are needed for the drone attacks.
"Changing the standards of when you can go after somebody with a drone; it has to be a continuing imminent threat to the American people with no chance of civilian casualties," Graham said in voicing a catalogue of faults he finds in the way the president is dealing with foreign policy and national security issues.
"Our enemies are emboldened all over the planet. Al Qaeda in Iraq is coming back with vengeance," Graham said. "Syria is falling apart. We are talking about helping the rebels but doing nothing about it. Iran is marching toward a nuclear weapon. And we show this lack of resolve, talking about that war being over. What do you think the Iranians are thinking?" Graham, who has been in Congress for 18 years, said: "I've never been more worried about our national security than I am right now. And the [Obama] speech did not help."
"I see a big difference between the President saying the war's at an end and whether or not you've won the war," said Sen. Tom Coburn, (R-Okla). "We have still tremendous threats out there, that are building — not declining, building — and to not recognize that, I think, is dangerous in the long run and dangerous for the world."
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Photo of Sen. Lindsey Graham: AP Images