Did President Donald Trump have legal authority to order the killing of a top Iranian general in Iraq?

The short answer: Probably.

But it depends on facts that aren’t publicly known yet. And legal experts are quick to note that even if it was legal that doesn’t necessarily make it the right decision.

The administration says Gen. Qassem Soleimani was “actively developing” plans to kill American diplomats and service members. Experts in U.S. and international law say that would appear to justify the action under established doctrines allowing the president as commander in chief to act in the nation’s self-defense.

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