Sunday, 20 January, 2019

White House sought military strike against Iran

White House national Security Advisor John Bolton listens as U.S. President Donald Trump Pentagon officials ‘rattled’ by Trump White House request for military options to attack Iran: report
Kenny Thornton | 14 January, 2019, 18:41

The request was met with concern by both the Pentagon and the State Department, according to the Journal, with one former administration official telling the paper that people were "shocked" by the request.

What was known until now was that Mr Bolton's National Security Council also asked the military to present the White House with options for striking Iran as a way of countering Tehran's influence in the region.

The Journal, citing conversations with people familiar with the talks, also reported that the council requested options for launching strikes at both Iraq and Syria when they made the request for Iran.

The Times asserted that Bolton's request followed Iranian-backed militants firing mortars or rockets onto the grounds of the United States Embassy in Baghdad in September. No one was harmed by the explosions, which landed in a vacant lot, and there was little media attention given the relative frequency of such attacks on Green Zone. Two days later, unidentified militants fired three rockets that hit close to the US consulate in the southern city of Basra but caused no serious damage.

Before joining the Trump administration, Bolton argued repeatedly that the USA should attack Iran and had supported regime change in the country.

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Garrett Marquis, speaking for the National Security Council responded to the report by stating it 'coordinates policy and provides the president with options to anticipate and respond to a variety of threats'.

Asked about the report during his Middle East trip, USA secretary of state Mike Pompeo declined comment.

The US considered military strikes on Iran after a mortar attack close to its embassy in Baghdad in September, American officials said yesterday.

After the attack in Baghdad, the White House warned that "the United States will hold the regime in Tehran accountable for any attack that results in injury to our personnel or damage to United States government facilities". "If they're responsible for the arming and training of these militias, we're going to go to the source". The range and accuracy of Iran's missiles are constantly improving - largely because the world refuses to take a stand against their illegal development of ICBMs.

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