One-On-One With Oklahoma Sen. James Lankford

Thursday, February 19th 2015, 6:44 pm
By: News 9

US Senator James Lankford just returned from the Middle East, where he got a better understanding of terrorist groups like ISIS that threaten the United States and civilized nations everywhere.

It's been just about a month and a half since Lankford moved from the House to the Senate, taking the seat that Dr. Tom Coburn had held for ten years.

He made the trip to the Middle East in his capacity as a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. And because this was intelligence-related, he said there's only so much he can say about what they did, but told News 9 the idea was to meet with some of our foreign partners about how best to handle the terrorist threat, and particularly the threat posed by the self-proclaimed Islamic State, or ISIS.

“Dealing with ISIS is a significant issue for us as a nation. It's not something that can be ignored. It's something that we have to aggressively lean into. They are coming to war with us, and if we don't respond to them, they're going to just keep coming anyway.”

Lankford said ISIS behaves very differently from other terror organizations, such as Al Qaeda, in that there's no true centralized control. ISIS brass recruits people, he said, and may give ideas of who to go after, but leaves it up to those people to carry out attacks as they see fit.

He said defeating ISIS will require a global response.