Fox News host Tucker Carlson used Friday’s edition of Tucker Carlson Tonight to take aim at those in the Washington establishment that he claims have wanted war with Iran for decades and Donald Trump‘s decision to potentially give them what they want with the killing of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.
Carlson expressed his belief that there is now the threat of a “real conflict” with Iran — something he thinks the Western Asia country believes is already in motion, Mediaite reports.
“From Iran’s perspective, we’re already there. If Iranian forces killed the chairman of our joint chiefs of staff, for example, would you consider it an act of war? You would,” he said.
The 50-year-old political commentator expressed his belief that the drone strike that led to Soleimani’s death was not “just another symbolic bombing” but a “pivot point.”
“Neocons in Washington understood that immediately,” Carlson said, noting former national security advisor John Bolton’s reaction to the attack on Twitter, in which he congratulated those involved in the operation.
Although Iran hawks in Washington reacted positively to the news, Carlson suggested they were glossing over the critical “big-picture questions” that should be addressed when it comes to Middle East conflict.
“Questions, the obvious ones like: Is Iran really the greatest threat we face? And who’s actually benefiting from this? And why are we continuing to ignore the decline of our own country in favor of jumping into another quagmire from which there is no obvious exit?”
The Fox News commentator noted that the United States has been in Afghanistan for 19 years and suggested that such a prolonged conflict should be a sign that the same could happen with an Iran conflict.
Carlson also took aim at Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse’s response to Soleimani’s attack in which he praised Trump’s decision to authorize the drone strike and lauded the service members involved in the operation. According to Carlson, Sasse’s comment is simplifying an issue that is much more complex, pointing to the many American deaths that can be linked to narcotics stemming from Mexico and China. Carlson noted that there are many “bad people” in the world and suggested it doesn’t always fall to the U.S. to deal with them.
“We can’t kill them all. It’s not our job,” Carlson said.
The pushback against Trump’s decision has come from both the left and right of the political spectrum. Progressive commentator Kyle Kulinski blasted the president’s decision as well as those defending it. The 31-year-old talk show host said that the claim that Soleimani was planning an imminent attack on the U.S. was a false justification, paralleling the situation with the rationale used by George W. Bush’s administration to attack Saddam Hussein in the Iraq War.