Politics: Schiff: Trump has made Iran confrontation "far more likely" - - PressFrom - US

PoliticsSchiff: Trump has made Iran confrontation "far more likely"

19:55  19 may  2019
19:55  19 may  2019 Source:   cbsnews.com

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On three occasions in the past eight decades, Iran has served as a turning point for America’s strategic global interests. Now, as the Trump Administration turns Now, as the Trump Administration turns up the pressure on the Islamic Republic, it appears the country may once again become a fulcrum for our

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The Trump administration's posture towards Iran has made confrontation with that Middle Eastern country "far more likely," House Intelligence Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff told "Face the Nation" Sunday.

Tensions between the U.S. and Iran have been escalating, with the Trump administration insisting Iran poses a growing threat. Schiff acknowledged that intelligence reveals an increasing threat from Iran, but that is a "predictable" outcome of the White House stoking tensions. The administration's policy decisions "have led us to a state where confrontation is far more likely" with Iran, Schiff said.

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Transcript: Rep. Adam Schiff on "Face the Nation"

Schiff said the Trump administration's aggressive approach to Iran is also weakening relationships with allies, who insist it's not nearly as great of a threat. The U.S. military has refuted a senior British commander's assessment that there has been "no increased threat from Iranian-backed forces in Iraq and Syria."

The U.S. has pulled most personnel from Iraq after U.S. officials said Iranian military was likely behind attacks on oil tankers in the Persian gulf. And the U.S. has ratcheted up sanctions against the country.

Asked if the U.S. is going to war with Iran last week, Mr. Trump responded, "I hope not." Mr. Trump shot down a New York Times story last week that the U.S. is making plans to send up to 120,000 troops there if necessary, but also said he would send a "hell of a lot more" if needed.

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Moreover, the Iranians have ample grounds to suspect that Trump is mostly bark rather than bite: He is wary of spiking oil prices and a global economic convulsion that could mar his More importantly, an embroilment in Iran would break one of Trump ’s main campaign promises, to refrain from military

"I think it's fake news, OK?" the president told reporters on the South Lawn Tuesday. "Now, would I do that? Absolutely. But we have not planned for that. Hopefully we're not going to have to plan for that. And if we did that, we'd send a hell of a lot more troops than that."

Schiff: Trump has made Iran confrontation "far more likely"© Credit: CBSNews Schiff says Trump has made confrontation with Iran "far more likely" On another topic, Schiff lauded Republican Rep. Justin Amash, the first Republican to suggest Mr. Trump should be impeached. Amash unleashed a lengthy Twitter thread on Saturday, suggesting the president's actions rise to the level of obstruction of justice and are impeachable offenses. Mr. Trump responded to Amash on Twitter Sunday morning, calling him a "loser."

Schiff said Amash has demonstrated far more courage than any Republican in the House or Senate. But if impeachment is pursued, Schiff said Congress will need to prove to the American people that the decision to go down that route was one "made reluctantly."

"Well, I think that what the speaker has referred to, and I have as well, is, can an impeachment even be potentially successful in the Senate?" Schiff said. "We see no signs of that yet. And you know, I respect what Justin Amash is doing and has said. He showed more courage than any other Republican in the House or Senate. But what may be pushing us in the direction of impeachment in any event has less to do with Justin Amash and more to do with the fact that the administration is engaging in a maximum obstructionism campaign against Congress."

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Over 70 retired military leaders sign letter urging Trump against war with Iran.
More than 70 retired military leaders wrote an open letter to President Trump urging him to avoid war with Iran. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); The former Armed Forces leaders advised Trump in a letter published Thursday in War on the Rocks to take "crisis de-escalation measures." "As President and Commander-in-Chief, you have considerable power at your disposal to immediately reduce the dangerous levels of regional tension," they wrote.

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