Analyst: 'Everything the Trump administration has done has escalated Iran situation'

Iran analyst Trita Parsi reacted to the U.S. airstrike that resulted in the death of one of Iran’s most powerful generals during an interview with Hill.TV on Friday.

Parisi argued that “everything the Trump administration has done has escalated the situation,” tracing it back to President TrumpDonald John TrumpRouhani says Iran will never seek nuclear weapons Trump downplays seriousness of injuries in Iran attack after US soldiers treated for concussions Trump says Bloomberg is 'wasting his money' on 2020 campaign MORE’s decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal in 2018.

Under the Obama-era deal, Iran had agreed to curtail its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.

“The moment when it all started is when Trump pulled out of this, so if we’re actually looking for deterrence we know how that would work,” Parisi said. “It would mean proper diplomacy, trying to figure out how you can find some sort of a way of coexisting with elements that you may not like in any way, shape or form.”

Parsi is executive vice president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, a think tank with a focus on shifting U.S. foreign policy away "from endless war and toward vigorous diplomacy in the pursuit of international peace."

His comments come as lawmakers on Capitol Hill still reel from the news surrounding a targeted U.S. strike in Iraq that killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani among others. Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOvernight Health Care: Justices won't fast-track ObamaCare case before election | New virus spreads from China to US | Collins challenger picks up Planned Parenthood endorsement Why Senate Republicans should eagerly call witnesses to testify Trump health chief: 'Not a need' for ObamaCare replacement plan right now MORE (D-Calif.) said a day after the attack that the action was not authorized and Congress was not consulted on the decision.

The Pentagon, meanwhile, has described the U.S. drone attack at Baghdad International Airport as a “defensive action,” but Parsi pushed back against this notion in his interview with Hill.TV.

“The mere fact that the State Department immediately issued a statement saying all Americans should leave Iraq immediately is Exhibit A that this made America less not more safe,” he said.

Trump’s actions in Iran have sparked international condemnation.

The United Nations Secretary General António Guterres said he was "deeply concerned" after the U.S. strike, according to a spokesman for Guterres.

"The world cannot afford another war in the Gulf," the secretary-general's deputy spokesman said in a statement.

—Tess Bonn