Oversight

Democrats Need to Get It Together and Say ‘Stop’ to an Iran War at All Costs

The Trump administration is yet again trying to start a major war based on lies. It needs to be stopped.

Trevor Timm
GEN
Published in
5 min readJan 6, 2020

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The funeral procession of IRGC Quds Force commander Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani and Iraq’s PMU second-in-command Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis in Tehran, Iran, on January 6, 2020. Photo: NurPhoto/Getty Images

TThe rapid fallout of the Trump administration’s shocking assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani has been both unsettling and predictable to anyone who has warned of the grave dangers of provoking a larger war with Iran.

It’s clear the Trump administration is actively deceiving the American public. It’s clear a war with Iran would be an unmitigated disaster — no matter who is in charge. The message from Democrats, and really any politician, should be simple: Stop another Middle East war at all costs.

The consequences from the Soleimani killing are unfolding so fast it’s hard to keep up. On Sunday, the Iraqi Parliament voted to expel U.S. troops from the country. The U.S. military in both Iraq and Syria announced it has halted its campaign against ISIS to prepare for an Iranian response. Iran announced it was halting its compliance with the uranium enrichment limitations of the nuclear deal (which the Trump admin unilaterally left last year anyway).

Already, the Trump administration seems to be using the conflict as justification to ramp up its draconian border policies. There have been reports of the U.S. government systematically stopping Iranians and Iranian Americans coming into the country and interrogating them. Dozens of people have already said they were stopped at the border and questioned — even U.S. citizens.

Trump, meanwhile, has already explicitly threatened to commit war crimes against the Iranian people, tweeting on Saturday that the military has drawn up a list of sites to attack inside the country, including cultural and historical sites — an act which is prohibited by the Geneva Conventions.

Make no mistake: The Trump administration is purposefully attempting to provoke Iran in order to launch a full-scale, illegal war — and doing so by lying to the American public.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo refused to address Trump’s comments directly when he appeared on the Sunday shows this weekend, only saying

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Trevor Timm
GEN
Writer for

Trevor Timm is the executive director of Freedom of the Press Foundation. His writing has appeared the New York Times, the Guardian, and the Intercept.