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Republican Senator urges Obama to support war with Iran, ‘confrontation’ with China

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The United States faces a possible war with Iran to curb its nuclear ambitions and a “period of confrontation” with China over its currency, a top US lawmaker warned Saturday.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said his fellow conservative, fresh from their historic elections romp this week, support “bold” action to deal with Iran.

If President Barack Obama “decides to be tough with Iran beyond sanctions, I think he is going to feel a lot of Republican support for the idea that we cannot let Iran develop a nuclear weapon,” he told the Halifax International Security Forum.

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“The last thing America wants is another military conflict, but the last thing the world needs is a nuclear-armed Iran… Containment is off the table.”

The South Carolina Republican saw the United States going to war with the Islamic republic “not to just neutralize their nuclear program, but to sink their navy, destroy their air force and deliver a decisive blow to the Revolutionary Guard, in other words neuter that regime.”

He spoke just days before expected nuclear talks will see US and Iranian officials sitting at the same table for discussions on Tehran’s nuclear drive. The two countries have lacked diplomatic ties since the Iran hostage crisis of 1979.

World powers led by Washington suspect Iran’s uranium enrichment program is aimed at making nuclear weapons, a charge Tehran denies.

US Democratic Senator Mark Udall, who joined Graham during a panel discussion at the forum in Halifax, Nova Scotia, urged continued sanctions against Iran. But he also noted that “every option is on the table,” a thinly veiled reference to possible military action.

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Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said negotiations were still at “the stage of diplomacy and sanctions.”

“It’s not clear if this will work at the end,” he cautioned.

“Iran is a major threat to any conceivable world order.”

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The electoral defeat of four Democrats who sat on the powerful US House Armed Services Committee bolsters the Republican’s position.

But Democrats may gain surprise support for continued diplomacy from some ultra-conservative Tea Party newcomers to Washington who diverge on foreign policy matters with their Republican brethren.

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Various UN resolutions and sanctions have sought to halt Iran’s uranium enrichment activities, so far having little effect.

Graham also warned of a forthcoming “period of confrontation” with China over its “cheating” currency manipulation.

US and European lawmakers have called for a stronger Chinese currency as their economies struggle to recover from the global financial crisis. US lawmakers claim the yuan is grossly undervalued and causes global trade imbalances.

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Several countries ranging from Japan to Colombia have intervened in recent weeks to make their currencies cheaper in the hope of exporting their way out of the downturn, fueling fears of a global currency war.

Currency tensions boiled over at the recent annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund in Washington, with China rejecting calls for a quick revaluation.


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China vows to retaliate for Trump’s Rose Garden press conference — and could impose new sanctions on America

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US President Donald Trump said Tuesday he was ending preferential trade treatment for Hong Kong and had signed into law an act that authorises sanctions on banks over China's clampdown in the international finance hub.

In a discursive news conference dominated by attacks on his domestic rivals, Trump declared himself to be the toughest president ever on China, a country he is increasingly positioning as his nemesis ahead of November elections.

Trump announced that he had issued an executive order on Hong Kong as he predicted decline for the restless city, on which Beijing recently imposed a tough new security law.

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2020 Election

Trump’s former White House doctor Ronny Jackson wins GOP runoff for Congress in Texas

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Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician and President Donald Trump's onetime nominee for secretary of veterans affairs, has won his bid for the Republican nomination for a solidly red congressional seat in the Texas Panhandle.

With 100% of polling locations reporting, though some mail-in ballots will still need to be counted, Jackson held a lead of 11 percentage points over Josh Winegarner, a veteran agriculture expert and lobbyist. Jackson and Winegarner were competing for a seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Clarendon, who is retiring and held the seat since 1995.

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Ivanka Trump’s tweet raises eyebrows: ‘Why is a senior White House official endorsing a food product?’

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As her big brother was dragging their 14-year-old half brother into the 2020 campaign, senior White House advisor Ivanka Trump was endorsing a line of canned food products.

If it’s Goya, it has to be good. Si es Goya, tiene que ser bueno. pic.twitter.com/9tjVrfmo9z

— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) July 15, 2020

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