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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) faced heavy criticism for her reaction to Iran’s missile attacks on Iraqi airbases where American troops are stationed Tuesday night, when she took the opportunity to accuse the Trump administration of engaging in “needless provocations.”
What are the details?
“Closely monitoring the situation following bombings targeting U.S. troops in Iraq,” Pelosi tweeted at 6:31 p.m. “We must ensure the safety of our servicemembers, including ending needless provocations from the Administration and demanding that Iran cease its violence. America & the world cannot afford war.”
The backlash against Pelosi on her feed was fierce, not only because the speaker placed blame on the Trump administration for Iran’s actions toward U.S. personnel — but eagle-eyed Twitter users noticed Pelosi did not appear to be “monitoring the situation” as closely as she led on.
At 5:40 p.m., nearly an hour before Pelosi tweeted her public statement, a reporter from Politico posted on Twitter, “In meeting tonight Speaker Pelosi was handed a note telling her VP Pence was on the phone. ‘Tell him I’ll call him back,’ she said according to sources in the room, noting she had to go open the House for new session. Two minutes later, she was handed note about air base bombing.”
Between the time of that report and Pelosi’s statement, a reporter from Washingtonian magazine posted a snap at 6:14 p.m. of Pelosi attending the opening of a Washington, D.C., restaurant, appearing to be in good spirits.
Pelosi’s chief of staff told Politico that Pelosi returned the call to Vice President Mike Pence at 6:34 p.m., “and he briefed her on Iranian attack.”
Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) tweeted that “Speaker Pelosi is an embarrassment and unfit for office,” in reaction to the photo of Pelosi at the restaurant launch.
Iran’s attacks Tuesday night were in retaliation for President Donald Trump ordering airstrikes that killed Iranian general and known terrorist Qassem Soleimani.
Following Soleimani’s death, Pelosi lashed out at the Trump administration, saying it had “conducted strikes in Iraq targeting high-level Iranian military officials and killing Iranian Quds Force Commander Qasem Soleimani without an AUMF against Iran” and “without the consultation of the Congress.”