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Sen. Levin: U.S. had no choice but to get involved with terror threat in Syria, Iraq

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U.S. Sen. Carl Levin says the United States had no real choice but to get involved in the battle against the Islamic State, or ISIS.

“You can’t sit still and do nothing when you have a group like ISIS whose goal is basically total terror,” Levin said during a visit to Grand Rapids this week.

Levin says the Islamic State threatens to terrorize countries neighboring Iraq and Syria and even the U.S., if left unchecked.

The group has faced airstrikes from a coalition of countries for nearly three months. Levin says it's “critical” that countries with Muslim and Arab majorities have joined the coalition.

“The vast majority of Muslims hate this group, they hate terror. And they need to be supported in their effort to purge themselves of this poison,” Levin said.

Levin says the U.S. cannot send ground troops in to fight the Islamic State. His comments echo a speech he gave at the U.S. Peace Institute earlier this month.

“They’ve got to do this themselves. They want to do this themselves. But they need the help of other countries,” he said.

Lindsey Smith is a Peabody Award-winning journalist currently leading the station's Amplify Team. She previously served as Michigan Public's Morning News Editor, Investigative Reporter and West Michigan Reporter.
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