After news broke that Western intelligence officials said they believe that an Iranian missile downed Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, some lawmakers and commentators said President Donald Trump is indirectly responsible for the crash — if it was a missile that brought the plane down.
Speaking to CNN on Thursday, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) said that if it’s true that Iran’s air-defense system shot down the civilian airline, then it is “another example of collateral damage” from Trump’s actions.
“If what is being projected is true, this is yet another example of collateral damage from the actions that have been taken in a provocative way by the president of the United States,” she said.
Watch her comments below:
.@JackieSpeier blames President Trump for #IranPlaneCrash —“If what is being projected is true, this is yet another example of collateral damage from the actions that have been taken in a provocative way by the president of the United States” pic.twitter.com/AbmrJdU63R— Baharak (@Baharak_Irani) January 10, 2020
Speier wasn’t the one who said Trump is partially responsible for the downing of the airliner.
In an article in The Atlantic, David Frum — a speechwriter for former President George W. Bush — wrote that the United States could not “shove all blame on Iran for the human disaster of Flight 752.”
Frum continues to blasts the Trump administration, suggesting that it did not adequately consider the potential fall-out from killing Iranian general Qasem Soleimani.
“Trump acted against Soleimani impulsively,” Frum wrote, adding, “When the killing escalated tensions with Iran, Trump and his administration told apparent lies to make their behavior seem more considered and more justified.”
Finally, Frum suggests that both Bush and former President Barack Obama avoided targeting Soleimani for fear of such collateral damage, something he says Trump did not think through.
“President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama both flinched from doing justice to Soleimani, because they asked, ‘And what will happen next?’ Trump did not ask that question. Families across half the world are now grieving a consequence that Trump’s ego forbade him to imagine or ponder.”
Trump has been criticized by lawmakers who say he should have asked Congress for approval before authorizing the strike on Soleimani.
In response to escalating tensions between Iran and the U.S., the House passed a non-binding resolution in a 224-194 vote that directs Trump to cease military action toward Iran without Congressional approval.
But Trump, in his first rally of the year, argued that going to Congress could have delayed the strike, and the military might have missed a narrow window to kill Soleimani. Additionally, he suggested that lawmakers could have leaked the information and spoiled the operation.