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US reportedly bombs Iran-backed militias just as House passes resolution to prevent unauthorized war

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“Yet again, U.S. and Iranian-backed forces appear to be exchanging fire in Iraq, despite the American people’s desires to avoid yet another war of choice in the Middle East.”

The United States on Wednesday reportedly launched deadly airstrikes against Iran-backed militias on the border of Syria and Iraq just after the House of Representatives passed a War Powers Resolution aimed at preventing President Donald Trump from launching an unauthorized war with Iran.

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“We know from experience that the administration is likely to shoot first and figure out its legal justification later.”
—Ryan Costello, NIAC Action

Reports of U.S. airstrikes came after two Americans and one British soldier were killed Wednesday in a rocket attack on Camp Taji, an Iraqi base north of Baghdad that houses U.S. troops.

Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, commander of U.S. Central Command, blamed Iran-backed militias for the rocket attack on Camp Taji during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing Thursday. No group has claimed responsibility.

Speaking to the Washington Post, an anonymous American official denied that the U.S. carried out any airstrikes in response to the rocket

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The latest escalation in tensions occurred on what would have been the 63rd birthday of Qassem Soleimani, the Iranian general the U.S. assassinated in January with a drone strike approved by President Donald Trump. The assassination sparked retaliatory strikes by Iran and nearly resulted in an all-out war.

With the goal of preventing further military conflict, the House on Wednesday passed a War Powers Resolution that would bar Trump from launching a war with Iran without congressional approval. Trump has threatened to veto the measure, which is now headed to his desk.

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“Yet again, U.S. and Iranian-backed forces appear to be exchanging fire in Iraq, despite the American people’s desires to avoid yet another war of choice in the Middle East,” Ryan Costello, policy director for advocacy group NIAC Action, said in a statement. “We know from experience that the administration is likely to shoot first and figure out its legal justification later.”

“The choice for President Trump is clear,” said Costello. “If he truly wants to end America’s endless wars rather than start new ones, he should sign the resolution and prove his intentions to a skeptical American public and Congress. A veto would only demonstrate his desire to keep an unconstitutional war with Iran on the table.”

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Photo: Lt. Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr.


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This Europe country is housing quarantined coronavirus patients in a five-star hotel

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An ambulance driver wearing a white protective gown enters a Barcelona hotel and announces the arrival of three new "customers" -- a trio of coronavirus patients discharged from hospital into luxury quarantine.

"Good morning! How are you? My name is Enrique Aranda and I am probably the first non health care worker you see in several days," says the director of the five-star Melia Sarria hotel, peering into the ambulance.

It took just three days to convert the hotel, which features contemporary decor and bathrooms with marble finishing, into a clinic.

"Some patients arrive thinking that they were taken out of hospital to be left to die, many people are frightened. I try to make them forget all that," said Aranda, wearing mask and gloves.

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UK Labour to unveil new leader to replace Jeremy Corbyn

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Britain's main opposition Labour party on Saturday unveils a new leader who will take the helm of a defeated and divided party in the midst of the coronavirus crisis.

Keir Starmer, a former director of state prosecutions and Labour's Brexit spokesman, is the runaway favourite to win the ballot of around 500,000 party members and succeed Jeremy Corbyn.

The announcement will be a low-key affair, with a planned special conference cancelled due to restrictions on social gatherings imposed to stem the spread of COVID-19.

Instead, the result will be put out in a press release mid-morning -- and candidates have been asked to pre-record their victory speeches.

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‘Trump fires people for telling the truth’: President blasted for ‘dead of night decision’ to fire intel watchdog

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President Donald Trump was harshly criticized on Friday for firing intelligence community Inspector General Michael Atkinson.

House Intel Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Senate Intel Ranking Member Mark Warner (D-VA) were among the lawmakers who took to Twitter to criticize Trump on his favorite social media platform.

Here's some of what people were saying about Trump's decision:

Trump’s dead of night decision to fire ICIG Michael Atkinson is another blatant attempt to gut the independence of the Intelligence Community and retaliate against those who dare to expose presidential wrongdoing.

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