US senators propose resolution allowing US to strike Iran if Gaza war expands

US senators propose resolution allowing US to strike Iran if Gaza war expands
US lawmakers are introducing a non-binding resolution calling for the US to strike Iran if there is further spillover in the Middle East from Israel's war on Gaza.
3 min read
08 November, 2023
Senator Lindsey Graham said any killing of US troops at bases in Syria and Iraq would trigger a response from Washington by force [Getty]

US senators are introducing a non-binding resolution on Israel's war on Gaza which includes enabling the US military to strike Iran if the violence were to spill over further in the region.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and Democrat Senator Richard Blumenthal said that Iran and its proxies must be warned against tipping the region into a large-scale war, as rocket fire between Israeli forces and Hezbollah ramps up along the Israel-Lebanon border.

During a joint interview on CNN’s 'State of the Union' show on Sunday, the senators, who visited Tel Aviv last month as part of a US delegation, said that they are introducing a bipartisan resolution to the Senate this week which focuses on Iran.

Graham said that the resolution is a warning to Iran to restrain itself in light of attacks by Iran-linked militia groups on US assets in Iraq and Syria.

"If the war expands, if Hezbollah opens up a second front in the north against Israel in a substantial way to overwhelm the Iron Dome, then we should hit the Islamic Republic of Iran," Graham said.

"There’s no Hamas without the Ayatollah’s support, there is no Hezbollah without the Ayatollah’s support," he added, referring to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

If you had proposed a ceasefire between America and Japan four weeks after Pearl Harbor, you would’ve been run out of town.

To our friends in Israel: Do whatever you have to do to defend yourselves.

We are behind you 100%.

— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) November 6, 2023

The killing of any US troops at their bases in Syria and Iraq would also trigger by force a response from Washington, the senator said.

"The resolution puts Iran on notice that all military force in the region will be coming after you if you expand this war by activating Hezbollah or killing an American through your proxies in Syria and Iraq."

Blumenthal, from the Democratic Party, emphasised that the key word in the resolution was "deterrence".

"The purpose of the resolution is to deter Iran to stop the war from widening or escalating," he said.

In recent weeks, Iran-aligned groups in Syria and Iraq have conducted attacks on US military bases there in response to Washington’s support for Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.

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America is Israel’s closest ally and has repeatedly maintained its position of backing Israel’s 'right to defend itself', despite growing global pressure on Israel to allow a humanitarian pause for the entry and distribution of water, food and medical supplies of which the enclave has run dangerously short.

Last week, the Republican-majority House of Representatives in the US parliament passed a bill to provide Israel with funding worth $13.6 billion for air and missile defence systems.

However, Democrat lawmakers oppose the legislation's demand of making in-kind cuts to domestic services to fund the military package.

Israel’s attacks on the Gaza Strip have killed more than 10,500 people over the past month, most of them women and children.