Tulsi Gabbard: Escalating Iran tensions instigated by 'Trump's failed policy and strategy'

The growing tension between Iran and the West are partially a product of President Trump's strategy and the decision to remove the U.S. from the 2015 nuclear deal, according to Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii.

Trump is being negatively influenced by National Security Adviser John Bolton and others, the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate claimed Friday on "Tucker Carlson Tonight."

"Let's just recognize what's happening now is very precarious as we move closer and closer to the brink of war with Iran," Gabbard said. "This has got to be above politics. This is not about politics.


"We are in this situation today because of Trump's failed policy and strategy -- really influenced by people like John Bolton, Mike Pompeo, Nikki Haley and others."

Gabbard added that any troop deployment to places like Saudi Arabia in order to deal with Iran is "for the sole purpose of this administration's further escalating tensions with Iran."

"I think Trump needs to recognize at this moment, he needs to open back channels with Iran, get back into the Iran nuclear deal with the provision that we need to work toward demilitarization and de-escalation of tensions," she said.

Earlier Friday, Iran seized a British-flagged oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz and briefly detained a second, marking a fresh escalation of tensions between Tehran and the West.


The U.K.-flagged Stena Impero, which has 23 crew members of Indian, Russian, Latvian and Filipino nationalities aboard, “was approached by unidentified small crafts and a helicopter during transit of the Strait of Hormuz while the vessel was in international waters,” Stena Bulk, the shipping company that owns the vessel, said in a statement.

Iran's Revolutionary Guard forces, in a statement on their website, say the ship was seized for "non-compliance with international maritime laws and regulations" and is being brought to an unnamed Iranian port, according to the Associated Press. Websites tracking the ship's path showed it turning sharply in the direction of Iran's Qeshm Island, instead of its intended destination of Saudi Arabia.

Fox News' Greg Norman contributed to this report.