Pelosi, Schiff Upset Trump Didn’t Consult Congress Before Strike that Killed Soleimani

Nancy Pelosi has released a statement after the successful U.S. airstrike that killed top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani.

In the statement, Pelosi blames Trump for not consulting with Congress before the strike and demands Congress be immediately briefed.

The statement reads:

American leaders’ highest priority is to protect American lives and interests. But we cannot put the lives of American service members, diplomats and others further at risk by engaging in provocative and disproportionate actions. Tonight’s airstrike risks provoking further dangerous escalation of violence.

The Administration has conducted tonight’s strikes in Iraq targeting high-level Iranian military officials and killing Iranian Quds Force Commander Qasem Soleimani without an Authorization of Military Force (AUMF) against Iran. Further, this action was taken without the consultation of Congress.

The full Congress must be immediately briefed on his serious situation an on the next steps under consideration by the Administration, including the significant escalation of the deployment of additional troops to the region.

House Intel Chair Adam Schiff also tweeted a statement referencing the fact Trump did not consult Congress before the strike.

Schiff writes “Congress didn’t authorize and American people don’t want a war with Iran.”

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Democrat Senator Chris Murphy went even further, tweeting:

Soleimani was an enemy of the United States. That’s not a question.

The question is this – as reports suggest, did America just assassinate, without any congressional authorization, the second most powerful person in Iran, knowingly setting off a potential massive regional war?

 

Per NBC, in the past, the United States has credited Suleimani’s militias with combating a U.S. enemy in Iraq — the Islamic State. Suleimani’s Quds Force was a division of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, widely believed to support many Iran-backed terrorist groups, such as Hezbollah.

“This strike was aimed at deterring future Iranian attack plans,” the Defense Department said in its statement. “The United States will continue to take all necessary action to protect our people and our interests wherever they are around the world.”

The Pentagon said Suleimani had been actively developing plans to attack U.S. diplomats and service members in Iraq and elsewhere throughout the region.

His death is likely to drastically escalate tensions between the United States and Iran, which were already heightened by the New Year’s attacks on the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad.

Rioters tried for two days to scale the fortress-like walls at the United States’ largest embassy. They retreated under a show of force from the Pentagon; 100 Marines were airlifted into the compound, and about 700 more Army paratroopers are expected soon in Kuwait from a global response force based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Earlier, Defense Secretary Mark Esper threatened a pre-emptive strike against Iranian militias if there were any renewed attacks against U.S. personnel or interests in Iraq. The chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff told reporters that attackers would run into a buzz saw.

The U.S. strike comes amid heightened tensions between the United States and Iran over rocket attacks in Iraq that U.S. officials had blamed on Iranian-backed forces, as well as the attempted breach of the embassy compound in Baghdad.