Bernie Sanders says Trump "helped create the crisis" in Iran

Sanders dismisses idea of "limited strike" on Iran

Sen. Bernie Sanders criticized President Trump for his handling of the escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran, comparing Mr. Trump's strategy to "setting fire to a basket full of paper and then putting it out."

Mr. Trump decided not to launch a retaliatory strike after Iran shot down an American drone this week, saying he believed the casualty count of such a strike would be disproportionate to the attack from Iran. The U.S. pulled out of the nuclear deal negotiated by former President Barack Obama last year, which led to rising tensions between the two countries.

"It's like somebody setting fire to a basket full of paper and then putting it out. He helped create the crisis, and then he stopped the attacks," Sanders said in an interview with "Face the Nation" host Margaret Brennan on Saturday. The full interview will air on "Face the Nation" this Sunday.

Sanders accused Mr. Trump of thinking "that a war with Iran is something that might be good for this country." When Brennan pointed out that the strike considered by Mr. Trump was "limited," Sanders responded sarcastically.

"Oh, just a limited strike. Oh, well, I'm sorry. I just didn't know that it's okay to simply attack another country with bombs," Sanders said, incredulously. "Just a limited strike? That's an act of warfare."

Mr. Trump told reporters Saturday that the U.S. would be imposing new sanctions on Iran, with some being implemented "slowly" and some "more rapidly." Mr. Trump also said military action against Iran is "always on the table until we get this solved."

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    Grace Segers

    Grace Segers is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.