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Monday, December 09, 2019

Donald Trump’s decision to order an airstrike killing Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, less than a month after the House of Representatives impeached him, makes America less safe and war with Iran more likely, according to a Morning Consult poll released Wednesday.

While the White House claimed “Americans are safer” after Soleimani was killed, half of Americans (50 percent) disagree, responding that Trump’s decision makes the country less safe. Less than a third (32 percent) of those polled said it made the country safer.

A much larger majority, 69 percent, said Trump’s decision makes war with Iran more likely, while only 15 percent of respondents said war is now less likely. Late Tuesday night, after the poll was completed, Iran launched missiles targeting American military bases in Iraq.

The poll also showed that less than half the country, or 47 percent, approved of the airstrike, while 40% disapproved of the measure.

The Morning Consult poll mirrors other polls taken since Trump’s early January decision to order the killing of Soleimani.

Reuters poll released on Tuesday shows 54 percent of Americans disapprove of the way Trump is handling issues with Iran, with only 37 percent approving.

HuffPost/YouGov poll released Monday, nearly half the respondents (46 percent) disapproved Trump’s handling of Iran, with only 40 percent approving. The same poll showed less than half the country (43 percent) approved of the airstrike that killed Soleimani, with 38 percent disapproving.

And like the Morning Consult poll, a majority of HuffPost/YouGov respondents (57 percent) believe Trump’s action makes war with Iran more likely, while just 8 percent think it makes war less likely.

U.S. officials defended the killing of Soleimani, which Israel described as an “assassination,” by claiming the administration had intelligence of an imminent threat. However, the administration has not publicly released any information regarding the threat and some congressional leaders who have reviewed it question the Trump administration’s conclusion.

After the initial airstrike, Trump vowed to commit war crimes against the Iranian people if Iran retaliated. Trump threatened to destroy Iranian cultural sites, which would violate the 1954 Hague Convention, before eventually backing down from his threat.

In late 2019, Trump pardoned a Navy SEAL accused of war crimes.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

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