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White House May Have Sought Options to Strike Iran

White House May Have Sought Options to Strike Iran

The request generated concern at the Pentagon and State Department, current and former USA officials told the newspaper.

The Jerusalem Post reports that the Pentagon was "rattled" by Bolton's inquiry and it's unknown whether any option for military action against Iran ever made it to the president's desk.

Speaking to an audience of anti-Tehran activists, the longtime Iran hawk said: "The murderous regime and its supporters will face significant consequences if they do not change their behaviour".

Citing current and former USA officials. 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.

The attack that reportedly prompted Bolton to seek retaliation involved three mortars fired into Baghdad's sprawling diplomatic quarter, home to the U.S. Embassy.

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The Defense Department did draw up the plans, but it is unclear if they were presented to the White House, or if the president knew of Bolton's request, according to the Journal. No one was hurt by the shells, which landed in an open lot.

Later Sunday, Defense Department spokesman Col. Rob Manning told CNN that the department "is a planning organization and provides the President military options for a variety of threats; routinely reviewing and updating plans and activities to deal with a host of threats, including those posed by Iran, to deter and, if necessary, to respond to aggression".

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

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

Citing the lack of casualties and limited damage that resulted from the September 6 mortar attack, the USA officials whom the Journal spoke to said Bolton's request for a far-reaching military response was jarring. There were no injuries nor damage in either incident. 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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