Full Senate briefing on Iran scheduled for Tuesday

Full Senate briefing on Iran scheduled for Tuesday
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The full Senate is scheduled to be briefed Tuesday on the Trump administration's plans in Iran, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Thursday.

Chairman Jim RischJames (Jim) Elroy RischOvernight Defense: Erdoğan gets earful from GOP senators | Amazon to challenge Pentagon cloud contract decision in court | Lawmakers under pressure to pass benefits fix for military families Senate Foreign Relations chair: 'Best' not to pass Turkey sanctions bill 'at this moment' Erdoğan gets earful from GOP senators at White House MORE (R-Idaho), who helped organize the briefing, would not confirm whether Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoFive takeaways from ex-ambassador's dramatic testimony Pompeo: No US response ruled out in Hong Kong Ousted ambassador describes State Department in 'crisis' in dramatic impeachment testimony MORE and acting Defense Secretary Patrick ShanahanPatrick Michael ShanahanDefense chief calls on European allies to be wary of China's investments, blasts Russia Pentagon chief approves 20 more miles of border wall Why Dave Norquist is the perfect choice for DOD's deputy secretary MORE will be the administration officials briefing the lawmakers.

Senators have been demanding a briefing on the intelligence behind moves such as the ordered departure of nonemergency staff at U.S. diplomatic missions in Iraq and the deployment of additional military assets to the Middle East, and the Trump administration’s further plans for Iran.

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The so-called Gang of Eight — congressional leadership and leaders of the Intelligence committees — are scheduled to be briefed Thursday afternoon, and some individual lawmakers have also been briefed. But lawmakers have said the situation is serious enough to demand all of Congress receives a briefing.

The deployments and embassy evacuation have raised concerns that the risk of war with Iran is escalating. President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP divided over impeachment trial strategy Official testifies that Bolton had 'one-on-one meeting' with Trump over Ukraine aid Louisiana governor wins re-election MORE on Thursday said he hopes there is not war with Iran.

The Trump administration has said there have been increased threats from Iran to U.S. personnel but has not specified the nature of the threats.

Risch, who himself has been briefed, said Thursday that public reporting on Iran moving missiles by boat does not show the whole picture, but he did not elaborate on other threats.

“I would strongly caution everyone not to grab onto that and say, ‘Ah-ha, this is it,’ ” Risch said. “That is the tip of the iceberg. When these situations are assessed, it is not a single item that moves the needle. It is a conglomerate of things and a wide spectrum of reporting, information and methods.”