Shanahan, Pompeo, Dunford to Brief US Congress on Iran Situation

(MENAFN- Daily Outlook Afghanistan) TEHRAN - Bothchambers of the US Congress are scheduled to be briefed amid the Trumpadministration's escalating of tensions with Iran. Top security officials —including acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, Secretary of State MikePompeo and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Joseph Dunford — will appearbefore the House of Representatives and the Senate on Tuesday.
Some high-profilelawmakers and congressional leaders have already been briefed individually,such as Trump's ally, South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, who hasbacked Trump's anti-Iran policy.
'It is clear thatover the last several weeks Iran has attacked pipelines and ships of othernations and created threat streams against American interests in Iraq, Grahamsaid on Twitter. 'If the Iranian threats against American personnel andinterests are activated we must deliver an overwhelming military response…Stand firm Mr. President.
Unless Trumpbypasses the law, he would need baking from the Democratic-held House andRepublican-held Senate to go to war with Iran.
Trump earlierdismissed reports that he was trying to initiate negotiations with Iran in thewake of US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, tightening sanctions againstTehran and even blacklisting the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
Militaryconfrontation with Tehran could also ruin the president's chances of reelectionas he had promised his supporters to stay away from global conflicts as much aspossible.
Iran can defenditself: Rep. Gallego While Congress war hawks trumpet prospects of war withIran, the president's opponents accuse him of creating tensions in the word.
'Once again it bears repeating, @potus is NOT setting up war with#Iran, Florida Republican Senator Rubio claimed in a tweet Monday. 'Faced withsteady, consistent & credible stream of information indicating serious threatfrom #IRGC proxy forces, he has positioned US military in the region to defendAmericans & respond to any attack.
Democratic Representative Ruben Gallego, meanwhile, slammed Trump'santi-Iran policy reminding him that Iran can actually 'defend itself fairlywell.
'What I learned only made me more concerned that this administration istrying to create a situation that will get us into war, House Armed ServicesCommittee member Democratic Representative Ruben Gallego said Sunday on MSNBC.'There's nothing that's, in terms of our security or anything that I saw,that's an existential threat to the security of the United States and even toour interests in the region. While there may be some security threats to them,it's nothing that would require us to actually move so many assets at that areaand to threaten an open war with a country actually that can defend itselffairly well.
Iranhas time and again asserted that it is not seeking war but stands ready todefend its interests in the region. (Press TV)


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