Cruz says if he becomes president he'll stop trend of 'radical Islamic terrorism'

GOP presidential hopeful Ted Cruz, right, speaks to media upon arriving at GraceWorks Church, in Chattanooga, Tenn., on August 10, 2015 during Cruz's first stop on a tour of the state.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, says Chattanooga unfortunately has joined a group of U.S. cities that have been the victims of what he called radical Islamic terrorism.

And if he's made president in 2016, he would stop that trend, he said Monday.

Cruz, who is seeking the Republican nod in the 2016 presidential election, stood before a crowd of more than 800 Monday during a Tennessee campaign tour that started in Chattanooga.

Behind him were five flags, one for each of the five U.S. servicemen who were gunned down on July 16 after Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez attacked a military recruiting center and a Marine and Naval reserve center in Chattanooga.

Cruz said Monday the U.S. needs to change its foreign policy and rules of engagement for military to be able to properly defeat terrorist cells in the Middle East.