House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) condemned Thursday’s U.S. airstrike killing top Iranian military leaders, calling it a dangerous, disproportionate response by President Donald Trump to this week’s attacks on a U.S. embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.
The targeted airstrike killed powerful Iranian military commanders the Pentagon says were responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American and coalition service members - and were plotting more attacks, CNSNews.com reports:
“Major-General Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force and considered in the West as arguably the most powerful man in Iran, was killed overnight in a U.S. airstrike on a convoy near Baghdad Airport.
“Also killed, according to reports from Iraqi politicians and outlets close to Iran and its proxies, was Abu Mahdi al Muhandis, a deputy to Soleimani and senior leader in Kata’ib Hezbollah (KH).”
In her statement responding to the successful U.S. airstrike, Pelosi accused Trump of provoking the Iranian regime and criticized the president for not consulting Congress beforehand:
“American leaders’ highest priority is to protect American lives and interests. But we cannot put the lives of American servicemembers, diplomats and others further at risk by engaging in provocative and disproportionate actions. Tonight’s airstrike risks provoking further dangerous escalation of violence. America – and the world – cannot afford to have tensions escalate to the point of no return.
“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 for Use of Military Force (AUMF) against Iran. Further, this action was taken without the consultation of the Congress.
“The full Congress must be immediately briefed on this serious situation and on the next steps under consideration by the Administration, including the significant escalation of the deployment of additional troops to the region.”