With the recent death of legendary Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain, many of his colleagues are wondering how they can best honor his legacy. Some think it could be to rename a building in his honor. Others have stood and given passionate speeches in praise of the Republican “Maverick” and Vietnam War hero.
Sen. Lindsey Graham wants to honor him with a war that doesn’t end.
On Tuesday, the South Carolina Republican said he would carry on McCain’s legacy by lobbying President Donald Trump to keep U.S. troops in Afghanistan, apparently in perpetuity, according to The Washington Examiner.
“I’m going to make sure that the Congress keeps asking the hard questions and try to persuade President Trump if you leave Afghanistan it will blow up in your face, that hoping Syria gets better without a strategy won’t work, and do it in a Lindsey way,” he said.
It’s worth noting that after about 17 years, over $1 trillion spent, some 2,350 U.S. troops killed, more than 20,000 wounded, and the untold cost of related medical care and disability pensions, perhaps it was staying in Afghanistan that blew up in our face.
Still, Graham seems to have picked up the torch for McCain, who had become frustrated with a lack of strategy toward victory in Afghanistan and drafted his own in 2017.
The Taliban briefly seized the city of Ghazni earlier this month — sending a message to Afghans that their central government, just 100 miles away in Kabul, can’t protect them — and the one-year-old Trump “South Asia Strategy” hasn’t changed much on the ground in terms of control of districts.
Meanwhile, Army Gen. Austin S. Miller assumes command of the war on Sep. 2, making him the ninth American commander out of 18 total to lead international forces in Afghanistan since 2002.