'We ought to be on guard': Local lawmakers, Iranians monitoring tensions overseas

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — The deadly strike against the Iranian military contingent on foreign soil has raised concerns at home.

In particular, congressional Democrats worry that President Donald Trump may have acted without considering how it might escalate tensions in the Middle East.

“I would take the Iranian threats of retaliation seriously,” Rep. Ami Bera, D-Elk Grove, told FOX40.

Bera said President Trump’s order to take out Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani was done without the usual notification of congressional leaders. While it’s debatable whether that is legally required, some congressional Democrats say it is certainly advisable in this case.

“Especially when you’re thinking about going to war or an escalating conflict, we’ve all got to be on the same page,” Bera said.

Bera is a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, which will have to authorize the deployment of the military for a foreign war.

He said he’s not second-guessing the president’s objective but wants to make sure alternatives are considered.

“It’s just about time that this happened,” Tagho Alereza, an Iranian-American living in Northern California, said Friday.

Alereza still has relatives and friends in Iran and follows events in the Middle East closely. He said he disagrees with the radical tendencies of the current Iranian regime.

He said taking such a dramatic action will put the Iranian regime on alert, and for all its bluster he does not believe the Iranian government will follow through on its threats of retaliation.

“Any war it is their doom, they are not going to do anything,” he said. “They don’t have the support of the people in Iran.”

But Bera said it’s best to expect the worst.

“I think we ought to be on guard and I would expect Iranian retaliation,” Bera said.

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