Critics of President Trump lined up to decry his recent order that eliminated one of the greatest threats to the U.S.; an Iranian general with American and Israeli blood on his hands.
On Friday, the U.S. military carried out a drone attack that killed Iranian Major-General Qassem Soleimani, head of the Quds Force, a U.S. designated terrorist organization, and Iraqi militia commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis were the two terrorist leaders who were killed. The elimination of Soleimani was generally lauded as the greatest blow to global terrorism since Osama Bin Laden was killed with some experts saying Soleimani embodied an even greater threat. By eliminating Soleimani as well as the Islamic State and its leader Abū Bakr al-Baghdadi, Trump should be lauded as a superhero in the battle against evil. But not everyone sees it that way.
Of course, Rep. Ilhan Omar (Dem-Minn) was quick to criticize the Presidential initiative that eliminated an Islamist threat.
So what if Trump wants war, knows this leads to war and needs the distraction?
Real question is, will those with congressional authority step in and stop him? I know I will. https://t.co/Fj9TMossEW
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) January 3, 2020
Omar’s theory is that Trump used the attack on Soleimani to deflect public attention away from the impeachment process. It should be noted that the impeachment has stalled since Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi refused to submit the articles of impeachment to the Senate.
The Daily Wire published an article chronicling Omar’s long history of supporting terrorists and decrying the battle against terrorism. In 2016, Omar advocated for leniency for nine men who were charged with trying to join the Islamic State (ISIS). In March, Omar one of only two state legislators who voted against a bill that would allow insurance companies to block payouts to the relatives of terrorists. Omar had planned on meeting with heads of terrorist organizations on her junket to “Palestine” last summer but Israel denied her visa. In April, Omar demanded that President Trump push for the release of a senior member of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Hoda Abdelmonem from an Egyptian prison.
Rep. Chris Murphy (Dem-Conn) criticized Trump while perfecting the art of talking out of both sides of his mouth. After the attack on the U.S. Embassy on Tuesday (but before the military response), Murphy criticized Trump for his inaction.
The attack on our embassy in Baghdad is horrifying but predictable.
Trump has rendered America impotent in the Middle East. No one fears us, no one listens to us.
America has been reduced to huddling in safe rooms, hoping the bad guys will go away.
What a disgrace.
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) December 31, 2019
Yet when Trump did order a stiff response which included deploying Marines directly into the embassy and attack helicopters patrolling overhead, Murphy questioned whether Trump had the authority to order such action.
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?
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) January 3, 2020
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi echoed those sentiments, questioning the president’s authority while warning that responding to terror puts “the lives of American service members, diplomats and others further at risk.”
“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,’ Pelosi said in a statement. “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.”
It should be noted that the Pentagon justified the strike against Soleimani by saying he “was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region.”
The media was no better, choosing to support the Iranians rather than the president. The New York Times, a formerly prominent and reliable news source, posted a tweet describing the rioters that stormed the U.S. Embassy as “Iraqi mourners.” The article reported that the crowds arrived at the embassy from funerals for Iraqis killed in “deadly American airstrikes.”
After a storm of criticism, the article was amended and currently describes the Iran-backed militias as “protesters.”
Emma Vigeland, a writer for the left-wing Young Turks Network, decried the killing of Soleimani, saying that the Iranian general’s actions that killed Americans were “more legitimate.”
Imagine the Iranian government assassinated Mike Pompeo with a drone, at the direction of the president, and called it self defense.
That’s exactly what the US did by killing Soleimani — an act of war.
The only difference is Iran’s self defense claims would be more legitimate.
— Emma Vigeland (@EmmaVigeland) January 3, 2020
Rania Khalek, a Lebanese American left-wing journalist, suggested that Israel may be to blame for killing Soleimani, who she described as “Abraham Lincoln, George Washington and Captain America all in one.”
The US (or israel or whoever did it, we still don’t know) assassinating Qasem Soleimani & PMF leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis is shocking. These guys defeated ISIS. Shock value is the equivalent of Iran taking out Abraham Lincoln, George Washington and Captain America all in one. https://t.co/BrGRlMt2fI
— Rania Khalek (@RaniaKhalek) January 3, 2020