McCain: Obama ‘Absolutely’ Responsible for Fall of Fallujah

Sen. John McCain (R., Ariz.) said President Obama was "absolutely" responsible for the fall of Fallujah, a key city in western Iraq, to forces linked to al-Qaeda.

"We lost 96 brave soldiers and Marines in the second battle of Fallujah, 600 wounded," he said Wednesday night. "And now in Fallujah there are vehicles driving around with black flags. That is an abject, abysmal failure of Maliki, but also of the United States of America because we didn't leave a residual force."

Al Jazeera America host John Seigenthaler then asked him if President Obama was responsible, to which McCain responded, "Absolutely."

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Full exchange:

JOHN SEIGENTHALER: So is Iraq a lost cause? If not, what should the U.S. be doing?

JOHN MCCAIN: I think we should be sending people there who he respects. David Petraeus is the first example, to give him some advice and counsel, make it clear that we want to assist him with what he needs in order to regain military control, but there's got to be national reconciliation. There's got to be the sons of Anbar there. John, we lost 96 brave soldiers and Marines in the second battle of Fallujah. 600 wounded. And now in Fallujah there are vehicles driving around with black flags. That is an abject, abysmal failure of Maliki, but also of the United States of America because we didn't leave a residual force.

SEIGENTHALER: Is President Obama responsible for that?

MCCAIN: Absolutely.