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‘Massive retaliation’ against Iran needed to end attacks on US assets

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Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., said the Biden administration needs to be tougher on Iran, and that a “massive retaliation” is needed to end attacks on U.S. assets. 

“Since Joe Biden took office, Iran has attacked American positions in the Middle East I think now over 150 times,” Cotton told “Fox News Sunday.”

The Republican senator added that the United States has only hit back a few times, and not at targets he would order were he commander in chief. The Senate Armed Services and Senate Intelligence Committee member said he would suggest targeting Iranians operating in Iraq and in Syria. 

“I would also send a clear message to Iran if these attacks don’t stop immediately, then we will begin to threaten their assets,” Cotton said, referencing when President Ronald Reagan sank half of Iran’s navy for attacking a U.S. Navy ship.  

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Senator Tom Cotton

Sen. Tom Cotton listens during a confirmation hearing in the Senate Intelligence Committee on July 12, 2023. (Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

The senator believes President Biden wants to go “out of his way to avoid Iranian casualties” and does not have “escalation dominance over a terrorist-supporting regime like Iran.”

Meanwhile, Rep. Jake Auchincloss, D-Mass., said later in the program that the Biden administration is “tough” on Iran. 

“They have rolled out almost 50 new sets of sanctions that have helped lead to almost 50% inflation in the Iranian economy. Iran is desperate right now,” Auchincloss said. 

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Tehran locator map

A map of Iran showing its capital, Tehran. (AP Photo)

He added that the “thing that Iran fears more” than military action, economic action, is political isolation through the Abraham Accords, a declaration signed by Israel and several Arab nations beginning three years ago.

“This landmark agreement normalized diplomatic relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, then later a renewal in ties with Morocco. The Abraham Accords are a game changer in the Middle East, providing new opportunities for direct flights, people-to-people exchanges, business partnerships, and government agreements that have all led to investment and growth in the area,” the American Jewish Committee website states.  

Rep. Jake Auchincloss

Rep. Jake Auchincloss during the Semafor World Economy Summit in Washington, D.C., on April 12, 2023. (Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

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“If we were to follow the Republican Party’s warpath in the Middle East, where we would end up with is yet another failed forever war in that region,” said Auchincloss, who served in 2012 in Afghanistan.  


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