Mark Warner has served as the Vice Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee since January of 2017. This experience gives the Virginia lawmaker special insight on the recent US military operation that killed Iranian Qasem Soleimani.
According the Warner, the results of the American action can already be seen on the ground in Iran. The senator told NBC’s Meet the press that the killing could result in anti-American activity both in Iran and other countries as well.
“That anti-Iranian effort now seems to have transformed, as we’ve seen the images and over the last 24 hours, into anti-American activity,” said Warner. “Soleimani could be a rallying force, not only within Iran, but as we may hear later today, even in Iraq where we may be now asked to leave.”
Warner also isn’t taking the White House assessment that a Soleimani threat to the US was imminent. He said that this is a question that the Trump administration will have to answer.
The lawmaker ended his remarks by wondering if this decision could turn off allies and NATO as well.
“This was a big thing, one of the top three leaders in Iran,” he said. “I’m not sure how we will be seen as both stronger and smarter if we have our Iraqi allies asking us to leave, if our NATO allies don’t feel like they are going to be informed before we take this kind of action, and frankly, if the people in the region that were against the Iranian regime all across the region are now rallying against America.”