Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, said Tuesday he is concerned Iran could launch a major cyberattack to retaliate for the airstrike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassam Soleimani.
"We are very vulnerable," King lawmaker told CNN's "New Day." "I think we should be on high alert because I think cyber is one of Iran's possible actions."
He added, Russia and China are the "major actors" in the cyber realm, but Iran has a "significant capability, which they've exercised in the past."
"There are vulnerabilities no matter how much we try to patch and defend, and I think this is one of the possible responses," King said.
Meanwhile, King said the major question about President Donald Trump's ordering the strike against Soleimani is not whether it was legal for him to do without consulting Congress, but whether it was a smart move.
"As I see it, it was the opposite," King said. "They've strengthened the regime in Iran. Two weeks ago, there were protests against the regime; now there are protests against us, massive protests."
The Trump administration has also given the Iranian regime an "outside target" to divert attention away from the country's internal problems, such as the economy, and has given ISIS a "new foothold in Iraq, as we've already done in Syria," King said. "We've alienated our European allies, and certainly people in the Middle East cannot feel safer today than they did this time last week."
Further, one of Soleimani's principal goals was to get the United States out of Iraq, and "this killing may end up resulting in the goal that he wanted to achieve," King said.
King also said he does not think the United States is safer because Soleimani is dead.
"You've got to acknowledge Soleimani was a terrible guy and [had] a lot of blood on his hands, and it's a good thing to get him off the world stage," King said. "The question is the timing and the place and why now, which has created all this cascade of problems."
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