Some of the Democratic members of Congress were disturbed that they weren’t informed about the U.S. airstrike on Qasem Soleimani.
But given their reaction and their antipathy to any action President Donald Trump takes is there any wonder why they were not told? You even have Democrats like Obama’s former Secretary of State John Kerry holding private meetings with Iran basically admitting he’s telling them to “wait Trump out,” he wouldn’t be there long. It’s horrible to say, but one would have to wonder about operational security.
But one person who was advised was Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC).
Graham told “Fox and Friends” that IRGC leader Qasem Soleimani and Iran gravely miscalculated President Donald Trump.
From Fox News:
“The intelligence was that Soleimani was orchestrating chaos in Iraq at our expense and throughout the region,” Graham explained. “The president was informed of these potential attacks and he acted. This was a defensive strike to neutralize future attacks that were planned and executed by Soleimani and the popular mobilization front: the Shiite militias in Iraq.”
Graham said Trump acted to prevent “holy hell” from occurring in Iraq and the region and Soleimani did not think the United States would take such a bold action.
“He’s not dead today because of what he did in the past, he’s dead today because he miscalculated what President Trump would do regarding future attacks,” said Graham in a phone interview.
He was asked about possible retaliation by Iran for the strike.
We’ve already put crippling sanctions on them and their economy is in shambles. That’s one of the reasons Iranians have been protesting in the streets in addition to the fact that they want the mullahs out.
Graham hinted what might come next if Iran tried anything. “Their oil refineries are the last thing they have in terms of an economy,” he said.
He also emphasized it on Twitter.
To the Iranian government: If you want to stay in the oil business leave America and our allies alone and stop being the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) January 3, 2020
“To the Iranian government: If you want to stay in the oil business leave America and our allies alone and stop being the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world,” he continued.
Boom. If they lose that, they know they will completely collapse and their own people will run over them.
It’s also pretty hard to protect big tank oil refineries and fairly easy to take them out. Perfect thing to threaten.
“They are going to come after us with a vengeance if we do not reset the table quickly,” Graham explained. “And, if I were the president, I would put on the table targets in Iran — not Iraq and Syria. Economic targets that crush the economy.”
Graham said that while the United States’ maximum pressure campaign against the Iranian regime has worked, what would “take it to the next level” would be to threaten to “destroy the ability of the Iranians to refine oil and sell it.”
“The president has to convince the ayatollah that if he retaliates, our response will be greater than the market will bear,” he concluded.
And now, they know we mean it when we threaten.