News & Politics

Ilhan Omar on Soleimani's Death: 'What If Trump Wants War, Knows This Leads to War, and Needs the Distraction?'

FILE - in this Sept. 24, 2019 file photo, Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta File)

Reacting to the U.S. airstrike in Baghdad that killed a top Iranian commander, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) questioned whether President Trump’s decision to authorize the airstrike was intended to be a “distraction” from other issues.

“So what if Trump wants war, knows this leads to war and needs the distraction?” Omar, a member of the House Foreign Relations Committee, wrote on Twitter. “Real question is, will those with congressional authority step in and stop him? I know I will.”

Omar’s tweet was written in response to a reaction to the airstrike from Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee.

“Soleimani was an enemy of the United States. That’s not a question. The question is this – as reports suggest, did America just assassinate, without any congressional authorization, the second most powerful person in Iran, knowingly setting off a potential massive regional war?” Murphy wrote on Twitter.

In response to Omar’s tweet, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) wrote, “According the the Obama Department of Defense, Qasem Soleimani was a terrorist directly responsible for the murder of over 500 US service men & women. Why are congressional Dems outraged that he’s finally dead?”

Cruz, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, posted a link to a Military Times article about the Americans killed by attacks connected to Iran.

Former Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes criticized the airstrike as well.

“Trump may have just started a war with no congressional debate. I really hope the worst case scenario doesn’t happen but everything about this situation suggests serious escalation to come,” Rhodes wrote on Twitter.

Cruz replied and referenced the Iran nuclear deal, which Rhodes helped negotiate in the Obama administration.

“Perhaps it would have been a better idea to send him $1.7 billion in unmarked bills, in pallets on planes in the dead of night, so he could kill more Americans?” Cruz wrote.