Press TV – US lawmakers have warned the administration of President Donald Trump not to attack Iran by using a war authorization legislation passed following the September 11, 2001 terror attacks.
Members of a foreign affairs subcommittee in the US House of Representatives on Wednesday pressed Brian Hook, the US special representative on Iran, to acknowledge that Tehran was not behind the 9/11 attacks.
Hook repeatedly declined to say if Trump legally enjoyed the right to attack Iran, echoing the comments in April before Congress by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
“I’m not a War Powers Act scholar. I can only tell you that everything we would do would be lawful,” Hook told the subcommittee.
But pressed by Democratic Representative Brad Sherman on whether Iran was responsible for the deaths of Americans on 9/11, Hook replied, “No.”
Hook claimed that any potential US military moves on Iran would be defensive, saying: “There is no talk of offensive action.”
Democratic Representative Ted Deutch, who heads the House subcommittee on the Middle East, said Trump’s policy on Iran was incoherent and had provoked tensions with Tehran rather than Washington’s desired outcome.
“Rather than force Iran back to the negotiating table, the administration’s policy is increasing the chance of miscalculation, which then would bring the United States and Iran closer to a military conflict,” he said.
After the 9/11 attacks, the US Congress passed the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) on September 14, 2001 to authorize then President George W. Bush to go to war in Afghanistan, where al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was based.
The authorization has since been cited by administrations to justify military actions in countries such as Yemen and the Philippines where al-Qaeda militants are allegedly present.
Pompeo, in his April appearance before a Senate committee, made baseless claims to link Tehran to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
The 9/11 attacks were a series of strikes in the US which killed nearly 3,000 people and caused about $10 billion worth of property and infrastructure damage.
US officials assert that the attacks were carried out by 19 al-Qaeda terrorists but many experts have raised questions about the official account.
They believe that rogue elements within the US government, such as former Vice President Dick Cheney, orchestrated or at least encouraged the 9/11 attacks in order to accelerate the US war machine and advance the Zionist agenda.