The National Security Adviser John Bolton requested that the military look into options to strike Iran after mortar strikes were fired near the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad back in September, according to a report this Sunday from The Wall Street Journal.
The Pentagon then allegedly looked into Bolton’s request, but officials were concerned by it.
“It definitely rattled people,” said a former senior U.S. administration official to WSJ. “People were shocked. It was mind-boggling how cavalier they were about hitting Iran.”
However, the White House said that it is common practice for the military to explore multiple responses and that the Council “coordinates policy and provides the president with options to anticipate and respond to a variety of threats.”
“We continue to review the status of our personnel following attempted attacks on our embassy in Baghdad and our Basra consulate, and we will consider a full range of options to preserve their safety and our interests,” said Garrett Marquis, a spokesman for the National Security Council to WSJ.
The Journal’s report said that it isn’t clear whether President Donald Trump was privy to these plans.
But Trump has taken a tough stance when it comes to Iran and Bolton has been working on policy to send a message to the rogue country.
“After taking the White House post, Mr. Bolton joined forces with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to develop a more aggressive policy aimed at weakening the government in Tehran,” writes WSJ.“Mr. Bolton worked last year to quickly pull the U.S. out of former President Barack Obama’s nuclear-containment deal with the country and to tighten economic sanctions on Tehran, moves eagerly sought by Mr. Trump. In a September speech, Mr. Bolton warned Tehran that there would be “hell to pay” if Iran threatened America or its allies.”
Author’s note: As the Trump administration settles the North Korea problem, it’s time to come up with a solution to Iran. This means all options need to be on the table. Iran needs to know that force isn’t something the U.S. is afraid to take.