Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-NY) said on MSNBC’s Jose Diaz-Balart Show Thursday that the Islamic State is not a direct threat to the United States’ national security when asked about the group’s advance on Kobani, Syria, and attacks in Baghdad’s Green Zone.
“I don’t see where that’s a threat to our national security… there is a cancer in this part of the world, and it is true that America and probably Europe has no idea the depth of feeling and discord that are in this area for religious reasons. Notwithstanding that it appears as though they could be overall a threat, not directly to us, but for us to be involved in a military way, I don’t see how in the heck that’s going to resolve anything.”
The MSNBC host asked the longtime Harlem Representative if he supported the bombing campaigns. Rangel, who voted against funding $500 million to train and arm Syrian rebels, answered,
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“Of course not, of course not. You bomb when you’re at war with a country. You’re not at war with a country.”
In an op-ed piece in Time last month, Rangel wrote that he is optimistic about Obama’s strategy to defeat ISIS, yet he voted against the Continuing Appropriations Resolution because it would amass additional debt. He is proposing a levy for a war tax in addition to bringing back the military draft.
“Listen, it’s a confusing thing, and if indeed the president and those who support him in terms of this ‘war,’ if they’re right, bring it to the Congress and convince the United States of America that there’s a threat to our national security. And when you do that, be prepared to pay for it. Be prepared to make the sacrifice. Have a mandatory military. So that we all share in defending ourselves and also pay for it with a war tax.”
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