Washington, D.C. – Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, released the statement below after President Trump directed the Pentagon to launch an airstrike that killed Iranian Quds Force commander General Qasem Soleimani:
“Qasem Soleimani was responsible for Iran’s most destabilizing activities throughout the region, and has the blood of Americans and our allies on his hands. There is no mourning his death.
“But we should be concerned with the haphazard manner in which this occurred and the long-term consequences of this decision. We’re in this dangerous place now because of President Trump’s reckless policy and irresponsible provocation of Iran, which is the latest in a string of non-strategic decisions in the Middle East that have weakened our position and strengthened our adversaries. It is naïve to believe that this move would somehow motivate Iran to return to the negotiating table or deescalate tensions, rather than create the potential for another unnecessary war in the region.
“The most immediate concern is protecting American personnel, allies – including Israel – and interests in the region, and ensuring we take decisive steps to prevent broader escalation. The Trump Administration must come to Congress to explain its legal justification for the strike and the details of the what it has described as an ‘imminent threat.’ The administration must also present a comprehensive strategy to halt escalation, ensure the U.S. is prepared for any retaliatory steps taken by Iran or its proxies, and articulate a clear path forward.”