- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 9, 2020

Former Rep. Joe Walsh, who is mounting a long-shot primary challenge to President Trump, on Thursday said the U.S. drone strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani put America in jeopardy.

“We’re less safe,” Mr. Walsh told The Washington Times. “Americans will die because of what he did.”

Mr. Trump has said that Iran appeared to be standing down after it launched more than a dozen missiles at bases in Iraq that did not kill any U.S. troops.

Mr. Walsh said the president “has no f—ing clue what he’s doing.”

“That’s a real concern and a real worry,” he said. “That’s one wild card factor here, is that there was no strategy put into this decision. I think we all know that, and I think that story will come out.”

Mr. Walsh said that killing Soleimani, who led Iranian terror operations around the region and was responsible for the deaths of at least 600 U.S. service members in Iraq, was not worth it.

“The only thing that matters with what he did killing Soleimani is — was it a smart thing to do? Will it make us more safe? And it won’t. Americans will die because of what he did,” Mr. Walsh said. “And America, I believe, will be drawn more into that region of the world and philosophically I don’t think we should be messing around in that part of the world.”

“So for a guy who claims he’s a non-interventionist — he really isn’t … this will be the furthest thing from that,” he said.

Earlier, Mr. Trump said the U.S. took out Soleimani because the general was looking to take out the U.S. Embassy in Iraq.

Iran responded by launching missile strikes on Tuesday at bases in Iraq that housed U.S. personnel.

Mr. Walsh said that he generally considers himself a non-interventionist.

“If Walsh were president, our troops would be coming home from Afghanistan, would be coming home from Syria, and would eventually be coming home from Iraq,” he said. “We would stand by Israel and let the world, let that region know that we got the biggest, baddest military in the world, and if you do anything to Israel or us, we’re going to come down on you like a ton of bricks.”

“But my whole lifetime, we’ve been trying to remake the Middle East and it’s only made things worse,” he added. “So I don’t want to remake the Middle East. I want the good countries in the Middle East to remake themselves — that’s what I would try to work toward.”

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