Sen. John McCain advises against reinstating Dempsey and Winnefeld

U.S. Senator John McCain made a statement on Friday against reinstating Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey and Navy Adm. James A. Winnefeld due to their failure to offer the President sound advice on crises.

"I continue to be seriously concerned about the advice that our nation's top military leaders have given the President and National Security Council regarding the most serious and time-sensitive crises in the world today," McCain said. "More than 100,000 Syrians have been slaughtered in what General Dempsey himself has called 'a human tragedy' yet we have done nothing to stop it. He cites 'the complexity and the myriad actors that are involved' as the reason he has not recommended military action."

Dempsey and Winnefeld are up for a two-year term renewal. McCain said that Dempsey has not played his part as General to take action in securing the U.S.'s and allies' interests.

"In my many years, I have seen a lot of military commanders overstate what is needed to conduct military action for one reason or another," McCain said. "But, regarding Syria, rarely have I seen an effort as disingenuous and exaggerated as what General Dempsey has proposed. The option that many of us have proposed is limited stand-off strikes to degrade Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's air power and ballistic missile capability - an approach that the Institute for the Study of War recently demonstrated as eminently feasible. But, what General Dempsey described would be needed to conduct 'limited stand-off strikes' is completely disingenuous as to both the problem and the solution."

McCain said if Syria does not gain statehood, it will become home to Al-Qaeda and threaten the security interests of the U.S. and its allies.

"My votes in the Armed Services Committee against rubber-stamping General Dempsey and Admiral Winnefeld's nominations reflect my continuing concerns about the professional military advice they have given the President," McCain said. "America needs to take the lead on addressing this international calamity before another 100,000 have to die at the hands of the Assad regime and our regional security interests are further damaged."