The Washington Post editorial board on Wednesday warned of the dangers of declaring President Donald Trump triumphant in Iran after the pause of the escalation in tensions between the two nations.
In a new op-ed, the newspaper’s board described Trump acolytes’ boast that the president had “eliminated the architect of Iran’s foreign adventurism” (top Gen. Qassem Soleimani) while “avoiding a more damaging response” as “premature and shortsighted.”
“Iran’s strikes on U.S. interests and allies will almost certainly continue in the coming months,” the board wrote. “Unless the Trump administration quickly steps up its diplomatic game, what Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called his ultimate aim — the removal of the United States from the Middle East — could soon be realized in Iraq and Syria.”
The board noted how Trump still had to tackle the thorny issues of Iran’s nuclear program and the presence of U.S. troops in Iraq. Trump announced new sanctions on Iran as he addressed the nation on Wednesday.
It suggested the president “embrace the pause in hostilities as an opportunity to begin serious negotiations with the Islamic republic.”
“There was reason for relief Wednesday that the United States and Iran had avoided a plunge into full-scale war,” the editorial concluded. “But Mr. Trump’s manifest lack of clear goals or strategy in the Middle East, combined with his readiness to launch strikes or order troop movements on impulse, is cause for continued alarm.”