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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate passed legislation on Thursday to limit President Donald Trump's ability to wage war against Iran, rebuking him weeks after a strike against an Iranian military commander and Tehran's retaliation raised fears of broader regional conflict.
Eight of Trump's fellow Republicans joined Democrats to pass the war powers resolution by 55-45. The measure would require Trump to remove U.S. troops engaged in hostilities against Iran unless Congress declares war or passes a specific authorization for the use of military force.
Trump has promised a veto, and there is not expected to be enough support to muster the two-thirds Senate super majority to override. Fifty-three of the 100 senators are Republicans, who rarely break with the president.
US warns Iran's new Quds Force commander 'will meet the same fate' as Soleimani if he kills Americans
The U.S. already has overwhelming force in the Middle East to deal with any threat from Iran, as it has built up air, ground and naval assets steadily since last May, as well as recent preparations for a possible conflict.
By contrast, Iran has relied on "asymmetric" rather than conventional warfare by its own forces and proxies. But it possesses advanced missile and drone capabilities, according to the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency.
After the U.S. executed a deadly strike on Iranian Quds Force commander Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani Jan. 3, and Iran retaliated Jan. 7 by launching missiles at two bases in Iraq housing U.S. troops, predictions are flying about what a possible conflict would look like.
Editor's Note: The following is an op-ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Task & Purpose.
In the wake of the U.S. airstrike against Iranian commander Maj. Gen Qasem Soleimani, some left-leaning veterans groups have suggested on social media that if you don't want to go to war with Iran, you should go UA (unauthorized absence).
This is terrible advice. I know, because at the height of the war in Iraq, I helped kick out more than 100 Marines who did just that.
Although some surrendered to authorities, most were apprehended. The government doesn't consider desertion a serious enough crime to make it a high priority for law enforcement, but that's because they don't have to.
Trump to Iran: If you attack us, we'll hit the same number of targets as US hostages you took in 1979
President Donald Trump issued an unusual warning on Saturday that if Iran launches any reprisal attacks for the death of Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, the U.S. military is prepared to strike 52 Iranian targets — one for each of the hostages that the Iranians held for more than a year after seizing the U.S. embassy in Tehran in 1979.
A Navy amphibious assault ship with thousands of Marines on board will skip a planned training exercise in Africa to instead head toward the Middle East as tensions there spike.