By | Rachel Brooks
Contributor | Telegraph Local
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The Trump administration warns that Iran can retaliate against the US within weeks. Citing Fox 10, Trump has publicly stated that 52 Iranian operation sites are now targets. He will use militarized force against each or all of the 52 sites if Iran acts against Americans or American assets.
These tweets were posted directly after the White House formally notified Congress on Saturday. The Trump administration also cites a symbolic reason for targeting 52 specific sites. They represent 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago.
In the wake of Trump’s retaliation notice, the Department of Homeland Security has issued a warning. They stated that the US should expect Iranian-sourced attacks including cyberattacks in the immediate future. The New York Times has reported that the DHS sees no “credible threat” from the Iranian state at this time but has issued the warning as a precaution.
Citing the Hill, Congress will clash over Trump’s military powers. Democrats seek to curb Trump’s war proceedings following the US drone strike assassination that killed Qud’s Force leader Qassem Soleimani and Hezbollah-founder al-Muhandis. Lawmakers refer to this airstrike as a “major escalation” of tensions between the US and Iran. The Senate Democrats now mobilize behind a resolution that would force Trump to withdraw the troops from hostilities against Iran. Unless Congress declares war or passes a resolution authorizing military force.
“I will do everything I can to assert our authority. We do not need this president either bumbling or impulsively getting us into a war,” said Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY)
Also citing the Hill, the airstrike that took out Soleimani and other prominent Iranian military leaders has drawn threats of swift revenge from Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Al Khamenei.
A former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Admiral James Stavridis has warned on Sunday of Iranian attacks on US naval ships in the Persian Gulf. He also warns that senior US military and diplomats in Europe may be soft targets of Iranian aggression.
Also citing the Hill, Democrats and Republicans have now reached an agreement belief that the US-Iran may be on the path to a heated military clash with Iran. However, the Republicans have rallied around Trump’s airstrike against Soleimani in Baghdad. It is for this reason that any resolution to curb Trump’s power to attack Iran will likely fail to gather full GOP support.
Citing Al Jazeera, Soleimani’s remains have made their way to Ahvaz, Iran as of Sunday morning. There have not been any reports of violent activity in Ahvaz related to the procession. Citing VOA, the funeral procession proceeds from Ahvaz to Mashad, to Tehran, before at last reaching the burial place in Soleimani’s native Kerman, scheduled for January 7, 2020.
Also on Sunday, Iran has summoned the German diplomat in Tehran to condemn “destructive” comments made by German officials who supported the Soleimani assassination. Yet, a German spokeswoman has confirmed the German opinion. The US airstrike against Soleimani was a response to Iranian military provocations.
The UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson remained silent on the situation. He faces criticism for this. Johnson was away celebrating the New Year holiday on the Caribbean island of Mustique.
Also citing Al Jazeera, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has stated that the US will “pay the price” for the assassination of Soleimani and al-Muhandis. This is a developing story. Telegraph Local will continue to bring you insights into US-Iran escalations and Islamic militia movements. Continue checking back here for more.