Lawmakers seeking answers on attack in Niger

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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Congressman Walter B. Jones of North Carolina’s 3rd District is pushing for answers in a Niger attack that killed four American soldiers.

Jones said, “I’m on the Armed Services Committee and I have been notified today that at eight o’clock tomorrow morning we’re going to have a classified briefing on the situation that killed four Americans in Niger.”

Jones said as of Tuesday, there are more questions than answers.

“I, like most members in congress, did not know that we had so many of our troops in that area of Africa,” said Jones.

The congressman said the fact that so many of his colleagues on the Hill have questions on the attack proves a bigger point.

“I have been very out spoken about the fact that Congress does not debate where we are sending our troops,” said Jones. “It’s the Legislative branch that decides on war and sending troops to fight and die.”

Jones suggested the Legislative branch should debate more often on the subject and said the Executive branch has held too much power in military decision making.

The conversation heard around the world between President Trump and a gold star widow Myeisha Johnson, Jones said,  is not helping the situation.

“I think that the President, if they had just had a brief conversation and kept it to that point of extending his condolences and let that be it, I think it would be the right thing to do,” said Jones.

He has written to all four of the families who lost loved ones.

“I’ve signed over 11,000 letters since we went into Iraq back in 2003,” said Jones. “I want the families to know that I do share in their pain.”

Jones said the Senate is set to hold a similar classified meeting Thursday.

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