Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., blasted his Democratic colleagues on Tuesday for suggesting that the U.S. try appeasement with Iran, likening the strategy to a weakness that “invites the wolves.”
Kennedy, 68, made the comments during an appearance on “The Story” with Martha MacCallum, shortly after Iran fired more than a dozen ballistic missiles into Iraq, targeting U.S. military and coalition forces housed at Iraqi military bases at Al-Assad and Erbil.
Chart shows estimated missile ranges for Iranian weapons. Iran has launched a missile strike against two bases in Iraq housing US troops.
The senator noted that the attack marked the 12th time in the last several months in which either Iran or its proxies had fired at American military personnel in Iraq. The difference this time, Kennedy said, is that Iran has claimed responsibility, whereas the last 11 times “they lied about it.”
“The Iranians have shot down drones. They tried to destroy the Saudi oil fields. They tried to storm our embassy,” Kennedy said. “So, when my Democratic friends say we need appeasement, well appeasement hasn’t worked. And I think that we’ve learned, with respect to Iran, that weakness invites the wolves.”
Tuesday’s attack came five days after a U.S. airstrike at Baghdad’s airport killed Iranian Quds Force Gen. Qassem Soleimani. Iran state TV described Tuesday’s attacks as revenge for Soleimani’s death.
“Do I wish this was happening? No,” Kennedy said. “But America is not the bad guy here.”
The senator then laid out demands for Iran: stop hurting the U.S., stop hurting America’s allies, and cease their ambitions to build nuclear weapons.
“Based on your past experience, we don’t know how you would use it,” Kennedy said. “Other than that we’re fine to just leave Iran alone and let them run their lives like they want to. But they just won’t stop these provocative acts.”