U.S. senators call for 20,000 troops in Syria and Iraq

McCain speaks with a reporter after the weekly Republican caucus luncheon at the U.S. Capitol in WashingtonBy Stephen Kalin BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Two senior U.S. senators called on Sunday for Washington to nearly triple military force levels in Iraq to 10,000 and send an equal number of troops to Syria as part of a multinational ground force to counter Islamic State in both countries. Republicans John McCain and Lindsey Graham criticized President Barack Obama’s incremental Islamic State strategy, which relies on air strikes and modest support to local ground forces in Iraq and Syria, and said the need for greater U.S. involvement was underlined by this month’s Paris attacks.

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