White House Formally Notifies Congress Of Baghdad Drone Strike, Nancy Pelosi Calls It ‘Highly Unusual’
President Donald Trump and the White House transmitted official notification of the U.S. drone strike that killed Iranian military commander Gen. Qassem Soleimani to Congress on Saturday, meeting the 48-hour, federally-required notification deadline after such a military strike is carried out.
According to The Hill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi suggested, in no uncertain terms, that the formal notification, which was fully classified, raised more questions about the circumstances that led to the decision to go ahead with the deadly drone strike.
“This document prompts serious and urgent questions about the timing, manner and justification of the Administration’s decision to engage in hostilities against Iran,” Pelosi said.
Pelosi then stated that the apparently unusual decision to classify the entire notification document was cause for concern, going as far as suggesting that there’s more to the story that the American people and Congress are not being told.
“The highly unusual decision to classify this document in its entirety compounds our many concerns, and suggests that the Congress and the American people are being left in the dark about our national security,” Pelosi said.
Though Trump and his top administration officials have insisted repeatedly that the drone strike that killed Soleimani was defensive in nature, claiming that he had already prepared a number of attacks on American diplomats, the backlash from Democrats has been bold and fierce in the hours and days after the surprise attack.
Pelosi argued that the drone strike only served to deteriorate conditions in the region, saying in a Saturday statement that the “provocative, escalatory and disproportionate military engagement continues to put service members, diplomats and citizens of America and our allies in danger.”
The House Speaker also called on Trump and his administration to determine a course of action that would help prevent any further escalation in the region.
“The Administration must work with the Congress to advance a bonafide de-escalatory strategy that prevents further violence,” Pelosi said.
Other Democrats have already taken courses of action that would afford Congress more oversight of any future attacks, including a measure put forth by 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders that would prevent the funding of further military acts without Congressional approval, as reported by The Inquisitr.
Sanders, along with Rep. Ro Khanna, argued that America faces a long list of issues that take priority over the possible entry into another Middle East conflict.
“Today, we are seeing a dangerous escalation that brings us closer to another disastrous war in the Middle East,” Sanders and Khanna said in a statement while adding that a war with Iran would cost trillions to fund and result in countless American lives lost.