Sen. Ed Markey (D., Mass.) said Tuesday that President Donald Trump is getting close to launching an attack reminiscent of 9/11 on Iran, citing Trump's threat to retaliate for any further Iranian attacks.
"When al Qaeda attacked us on September 11, 2001, which targets did they select?" Markey said during a speech on the Senate floor. "They selected the World Trade Center, the symbol of capitalism in the United States. They selected the Pentagon, the symbol of our defense."
In Markey's view, Congress must support his resolution opposing the targeting of cultural sites because Iran may imitate "our reaction" to being attacked on 9/11.
"We have a choice to make right now out here on the floor of the United States Senate," he said. "And that is to make a statement before we do that to the Iranians, because we ourselves experienced it, and we know what our reaction was."
"They will rise up in a way that will make it impossible to reconcile. We will be in eternal war in the Middle East."
Trump's threat came in the wake of a drone strike on Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, the terror leader that the Iranian regime is now honoring as a martyr. For months, Iran escalated tensions with the United States by downing a U.S. drone and by having its proxies storm the United States' Iraqi embassy, and last week Trump ordered the strike on Soleimani.
Democratic lawmakers have speculated Trump authorized the strike in order to distract from his impending impeachment trial.
Trump said on Twitter that the United States has a list of 52 potential targets in Iran, adding that the sites have strategic and cultural significance. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Mark Esper have stated that any military action against Iran would be lawful, although Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif accused Trump of gearing up to commit war crimes.