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Defense hawks urge continued US support to Libya after tragedy

A group of bipartisan senators remembered U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and said if America stops aid to Libya, it would be a dishonor to his death.

Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) condemned the killing of four U.S. citizens who worked at the U.S. embassy in Libya. They said extremists who don’t represent the rest of the country perpetrated the act.

“It would really dishonor the death of these four if we pulled out of Libya and stopped helping their new government,” Lieberman said in a speech on the Senate floor Wednesday.

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McCain made a similar point, drawing from his personal friendship with Stevens.

“I do not mean to use his death as a political agenda but I am confident that I knew him well enough that he would not want us to retreat,” McCain said.

All three lawmakers made the point that the small group of killers were extremists who would want the United States to leave Libya. The United States started aiding Libya in its revolution this spring, when the country overthrew Mohammar Gadhafi.

“The worst possible outcome of the death of this noble man would be for America to hand over Libya to the thugs that killed him.”

The Hill reported that some House Republicans called for an end to aid to Libya Wednesday.