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Senate Rejects Resolution to Defund Any War With Iran That Isn’t Approved By Congress

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee rejected a resolution which would have preemptively defunded a war with Iran if the White House did not obtain prior congressional approval.

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The Senate Foreign Relations Committee rejected a resolution which would have preemptively defunded a war with Iran if the White House did not obtain prior congressional approval.

The aim of the resolution was to block using funds to “support kinetic military operations in or against Iran unless such operations are specially authorized by an act or joint resolution of Congress that is enacted after the date of the enactment of this act.”

The power and responsibility of approving a war is supposed to belong to Congress, but that all changed with the 2001 Authorization of Military Force which was implemented in the days following the September 11th attacks. It has since been used to authorize conflict 41 times in 18 countries — all without congressional authorization.

On Wednesday, the Senate panel voted 13-9 against the bill introduced by Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Tom Udall (D-NM) that would have given power back to Congress. The bill was rejected by every Republican, except for Senator Rand Paul (R-KY).

“Congress is a co-equal branch that has the sole authority to declare war – so we don’t have to sit around and watch this administration spiral us into another endless conflict in the Middle East,” Udall said in a statement about the resolution.

Sen. Murphy added that the vote was to “remind this administration that they do not have legal authorization to launch a war against Iran without our consent and that no one else is responsible but Trump for putting us on this blind campaign of escalation with no off-ramp.”

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan claimed that the administration is not planning to go to war with Iran.

“We have deterred attacks based on our reposturing of assets, deterred attacks against American forces,” he said during a gaggle with reporters. “Our biggest focus at this point is to prevent Iranian miscalculation. We do not want the situation to escalate. This is about deterrence, not about war.”

Shanahan’s claims, however, stand in contrast to the news that the Pentagon is planning to ask the White House for 10,000 more boots on the ground in the Middle East on Thursday.

The plans, US officials told the Associated Press, is to “beef up defenses against potential Iranian threats.”

“The officials said no final decision has been made yet, and it’s not clear if the White House would approve sending all or just some of the requested forces. Officials said the move is not in response to any new threat from Iran, but is aimed at reinforcing security in the region. They said the troops would be defensive forces, and the discussions include additional Patriot missile batteries, more ships and increased efforts to monitor Iran,” AP reports.

Following Wednesday’s vote, Sen. Udall lamented that by the time Senate comes back from their Memorial Day recess we could be in a new war.

“It’s a very important amendment for the timing we’re in,” he said, according to a report from Roll Call. “At the end of this week, we’re going on break. With this building up, there’s a huge potential for miscalculation. When we return, we could be in the middle of a war.”

“It’s important that we lower the level of tension and try to put this on the route that if they want to go to war, come in and tell us what your case is and why,” Udall said.

Rep. Udall also spoke at the bipartisan Concerned Veterans for America’s Uniting for a Better Foreign Policy Luncheon where Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) asserted that “real morality and real toughness is standing up to the pro-war special interests and globalist powerbrokers. Real morality is affirming forever that the blood of American troops is not for sale to anyone, at any cost.”

“The so-called experts behind our failed foreign policy have not learned from their mistakes because they have never been held accountable for them. And so today the saber-rattling persists, and is directed toward Venezuela, Yemen, and most disturbingly, Iran,” said Gaetz. “As we look to these countries, it is our task to ensure that we don’t just recount the mistakes of past decision-makers, but that we learn from them. We must resolve not to start unwise wars or put our military in unwinnable and endless conflicts.”

On Tuesday, in contrast to the Senate vote, the House Appropriations Committee approved an amendment to the annual defense spending bill introduced by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) that would end the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF).

“The 2001 AUMF has been used as a blank check for endless war by three Administrations,” said Rep. Lee in a statement. “As the Trump Administration escalates tensions with Iran, it is more important than ever for Congress to reassert its constitutional authority. We must start by repealing the overly broad 2001 AUMF and do our job to debate and vote on any replacement.”

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At Least Seven Protesters Shot In Louisville As Attempt Was Made to Flip Police Vehicle

There has been riots across the nation over the death of a Minneapolis man in police custody on Monday.

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At least seven protesters have been shot in Louisville as an attempt was made to flip a police vehicle on Thursday evening.

It has been confirmed that one of them is critical, but the condition of the others is not yet known.

There has been violence, riots, looting, and arson across the nation as people protest the death of a Minneapolis man in police custody on Monday.

Rumors quickly circulated on Twitter that police had fire the shots, but the department has said that this was not true.

“There have been some arrests, but at this time we are not able to tell you how many as the situation is ongoing,” a statement from department spokeswoman Alicia Smiley to the Courier Journal said. “Information on those arrests will be available tomorrow through court records of the arrests.”

She added that police did not fire their weapons.

The Louisville protest was over a woman named Breonna Taylor who was shot by Louisville police in March during a raid at her home.

The family of Taylor has called for people to stop rioting and go home before more people get hurt.

“Louisville, thank you so much for saying Breonna’s name tonight. We are not going to stop until we get justice,” a woman says in a video tweeted by Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer. “But we should stop tonight before people get hurt. Please go home, be safe and be ready to keep fighting.”

Approximately 500 people marched through the streets before getting into a standoff with police.

“Meanwhile, live video from downtown Louisville around 12:30 a.m. shows some protesters behind makeshift wooden barricades, which appeared to be made out of picnic tables spray-painted with the words “You can’t kill us all.” Police in body armor and face shields held batons and lined up around Louisville City Hall. They appeared to fire rubber bullets and deploy tear gas canisters, fogging the air and inducing coughs among the remaining members of the crowd,” ABC7 reports.

The protest was ongoing after midnight on Friday morning.

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St. Paul Police: Over 170 Businesses Damaged and Looted During Thursday Riot

Many of them are small businesses that were already struggling due to the pandemic.

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The St. Paul Police Department has announced that over 170 businesses in the city were damaged or looted during the riot on Thursday.

The rioting began early in the afternoon and continued throughout the evening.

“As Thursday turns to Friday, our officers continue to work shoulder-to-shoulder with local, state, federal and fire partners to protect St. Paul,” the department tweeted. “More than 170 businesses damaged or looted. Dozens of fires. Thankfully, no reports of serious injuries. Calm on the horizon.”

The riot began when a group of 50 or 60 people attempted to loot a Target store in the Midway neighborhood. When police arrived, they reportedly dropped their stolen goods and ran down the street where they began to destroy other shops.

Many of them are small businesses that were already struggling due to the pandemic.

“Soon after, another group of people tried to ransack a Foot Locker store on University Avenue across the street. Police again intervened, resulting in a standoff between officers and the rioters,” Fox 9 reports.

Other stores that were targeted included Foot Locker and TJ Maxx.

During the riot, rocks, bricks and bottles of alcohol were thrown at police officers and their squad cars.

When the criminals began to move towards the State Capitol, Senators and their staff were told to evacuate in the “interest of public safety.”

By afternoon, armed citizens began to protest some local businesses.

The rioters have been in response to the death of George Floyd while he was in police custody in Minneapolis on Monday. A video of him telling an officer who had his knee on his neck that he could not breathe rapidly went viral and set off chaos across the nation.

There has been rioting in Ohio, Colorado, Minnesota and Kentucky.

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Watch: Rioters Loot Minneapolis Police Department, Cut Gas Lines, Reports of Women Being Kidnapped

There are also reports that women have been kidnapped during the riot.

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All hell has broken loose in Minneapolis as rioters looted a police department before setting it on fire, chased away police officers, and reportedly kidnapped multiple women.

Rioters were caught on camera chasing away police officers who were abandoning the 3rd precinct police department before it was entered by the criminals and lit on fire.

The criminals stormed the building shortly after — smashing everything they could find, looting, and lighting various rooms on fire.

The City of Minneapolis is now pleading with people to leave the scene, as there have been reports that protesters threw propane tanks inside and have cut the gas line.

“We’re hearing unconfirmed reports that gas lines to the Third Precinct have been cut and other explosive materials are in the building,” the city tweeted from their official account. “If you are near the building, for your safety, PLEASE RETREAT in the event the building explodes.”

There have also been reports that women have been kidnapped during the riot.

Libor Jany, a reporter from the Star Tribune wrote on Twitter that “amidst all this, police are being called to investigate a possible kidnapping from the parking lot across the street from their burning station; a screaming woman was said to have been forcibly put into a vehicle that then sped away, according to scanner traffic.”

“CVS on Snelling is on Fire. Car jacking and kidnapping just occurred. They’re shooting st random cars on university. Do not leave your home. It is extremely dangerous in here,” a Twitter user from Minneapolis wrote.

The National Guard has now deployed 500 soldiers to the area and began to arrive close to midnight.

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