Mark Warner comments on Soleimani assassination
U.S. forces conducted an airstrike in Baghdad that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who American officials say was helping orchestrate assaults on the U.S. embassy and, they say, was developing plans for wider, more systematic assaults on American diplomats.
The airstrike has come under criticism both domestically and internationally as Iranian leaders are pledging retaliation, and President Trump has been provoking the country’s leadership on social media.
Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued a statement Friday offering his own criticism, of the administration’s failure to consult with Congress ahead of the strike, and the apparent lack of planning for consequences.
“This is a situation that could easily and quickly escalate even further, and it is not clear that the Trump Administration has a plan to prevent another catastrophic war in the Middle East,” Warner said in the statement. “We need to be prepared for the long-term potential consequences of this action, which include: counter-attacks on U.S. troops and personnel in the region; substantial harm to the ongoing fight against the remnants of ISIS; and ultimately, the possibility of reduced U.S. influence in the region, further empowering our adversaries to the detriment of U.S. national security and our allies in the Middle East.
“The Trump Administration must act with all due haste to protect U.S. military and diplomatic personnel and other Americans in the region,” Warner said.