Trump threatens hit of Iranian sites if country retaliates for Soleimani killing

Source: The Hill | January 4, 2020 | Brett Samuels

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — President Trump on Saturday said the United States has targeted 52 Iranian sites and was prepared to strike “very fast and very hard” in the event Tehran retaliates for the killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

“Iran has been nothing but problems for many years,” Trump tweeted. “Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have targeted 52 Iranian sites… some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture, and those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The USA wants no more threats!”

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Trump said the 52 sites, which he did not specify, were meant to represent the number of Americans held during the Iranian hostage crisis.

The president offered additional defense for approving the strike that killed Soleimani, a high-ranking Iranian official and the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard’s Quds Force, describing him as a “terrorist leader” responsible for the deaths of many Americans.

But his threat of more potential military action is certain to raise questions about the Trump administration’s plans for containing the fallout of the Soleimani strike and further enflaming debate over the president’s ability to engage with Iran without congressional approval.

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