U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) continued her harsh criticisms of the Obama administration’s foreign policy, saying actions against the Islamic State group could lead the U.S. into a “devastating nuclear war” with Russia.
Gabbard’s warning on Tuesday was directed at Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, who testified during a House Armed Services Committee hearing about America’s strategy to defeat ISIS in Iraq.
Gabbard, a vice chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, said she could “only presume” that President Barack Obama’s recent decision to deploy American fighter jets to the border between Turkey and Syria was to “target Russian planes.” The two countries’ “diametrically opposed objectives” with air strikes in Syria, she said, create a “strong potential” for a head-to-head military conflict.
“Russia’s installation of their anti-aircraft missile-defense system increases that possibility of — whether it’s intentional or even an accidental event — where one side may shoot down the other side’s plane,” Gabbard told Carter. “And that’s really where the potential is for this devastating nuclear war — for something that could blow up into something much larger.”