WLBT-TV Jackson

Miss. leaders react to U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian general

By China Lee

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Mississippi’s congressional leaders are responding to the U.S. airstrike, ordered by President Trump, that killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani.

Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, believes that the actions taken against Iran were reckless and a threat to the nation.

“President Trump’s reckless actions in the Middle East have made us less secure and risk serious consequences for the security of the homeland by escalating an already volatile situation. We have to be vigilant. I am concerned that a day later we have seen little of substance from the Administration – including the Department of Homeland Security – on how it is planning for any contingencies. DHS’s core mission is to keep us safe from potential attacks, but under this Administration it has been almost singularly focused on immigration and has been without a permanent leader since April.”

Congressman Michael Guest (MS-03) released a statement in support of the move saying that the U.S. acted in defense of its allies.

“Qassem Soleimani was a terrorist who targeted Americans,” Guest said. “The U.S. will continue to defend our nation and our allies from the evil of terrorism that threatens the world, and I am thankful for President Trump’s strong leadership in this continued battle. Our prayers are with the members of our military and foreign service fighting to protect American lives and preserve freedom everywhere.”

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS), says that the presidents actions makes clear the United States will not tolerate attacks against our nation.

“Qasem Soleimani was a terrorist responsible for attacks that killed hundreds of American troops in Iraq and caused chaos across the Middle East. The President’s action makes clear the United States will not tolerate attacks against our nation, such as the Iranian-organized assault against our embassy in Baghdad this week. Yesterday’s successful operation also demonstrated the skill and power of America’s men and women in uniform. I am grateful for their commitment and service.”

During a qualifying event for the Mississippi U.S. Senate seat Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) said that she stood with the president.

“A serious situation no doubt, but to have strength and to have force you’ve got to show it.”

Iran has vowed “harsh retaliation” for the U.S. airstrike near Baghdad’s airport that killed its top general and the architect of its interventions across the Middle East.

The killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, marks a major escalation in the standoff between Washington and Iran.

The Pentagon is scrambling to reinforce the American military presence in the Middle East in preparation for reprisals. As part of that, the U.S. is sending nearly 3,000 more Army troops to the Mideast.