The recent terrorist attack in Barcelona was “unacceptable” given the intelligence the United States had leading up to it, a top Senate Democrat said Sunday.
“It’s unacceptable to see the signs we saw in Spain and still the tragedies that took place,” Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin (Md.), the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, said on “Fox News Sunday.”
Thirteen people died after a terrorist mowed them down Thursday with a delivery van in the touristy Las Ramblas area of Barcelona. A 14th victim died in a vehicle attack early Friday in Cambrils, a seaside town about 70 miles southwest of Barcelona.
Cardin was referring to a report by the newspaper El Periodico that the CIA had warned Spanish authorities several months earlier of Islamic State plots in that specific area. Police have linked the attacks to a terrorist cell of Moroccans, all younger than 35, from or around a small Spanish town near the French border.
Cardin also insisted that the Trump administration needs to present a clearer strategy for halting the surge of terrorist activity in Europe — an approach that uses intelligence, military and diplomacy to counter what appear to be well-coordinated attacks.
“What the Trump administration needs to do is articulate a strategy that uses all the tools in our diplomatic toolbox,” Cardin said.