Sen. Bernard Sanders says President Trump’s recent airstrike on Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani is reminiscent of police state assassinations.
The Democratic presidential hopeful told CNN’s Anderson Cooper this week that Mr. Trump’s green light on killing the Quds Force terrorist reminded him of Russian President Vladimir Putin — a former KGB operative — employing similar tactics on political opponents.
“But this guy [Soleimani] is, you know, was, as bad as he was, an official of the Iranian government,” the Vermont Democrat said Monday evening. “And you unleash — then if China does that, you know, if Russia does that, you know, Russia has been implicated under Putin with assassinating dissidents. So once you’re in the business of assassination, you unleash some very, very terrible forces. And what I’m seeing now in this world, as a result of Trump’s actions, more and more chaos, more and more instability.”
Ed Morrisey of the conservative website Hotair was flabbergasted at Mr. Sanders’ comments.
“Soleimani wasn’t a dissident at all — he was a commander of forces that at the moment were actively engaged in an attack on a U.S. embassy in Baghdad,” he wrote Tuesday. “Soleimani had ordered or facilitated uncounted attacks on US forces throughout the region over the past few decades. By any definition of the term, Soleimani waged war against the U.S., not the other way around, and the U.S. had every legal right to treat him as a combatant.
“That’s not an assassination — it’s a military response to an attack by cutting off command and control of it,” he continued. “If President Bernie Sanders won’t defend American territory from attack, perhaps that’s something voters need to keep in mind.”
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