White House Asked Pentagon for Plans to Hit Iran

Bolton's reaction to failed attack 'definitely rattled people'
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2019 10:33 AM CST
Updated Jan 13, 2019 10:47 AM CST
National Security Adviser John Bolton attends a meeting with President Trump and senior military leadership at Al Asad Air Base, Iraq, Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2018.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
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(Newser) – The attack—three mortar shells launched into Baghdad's diplomatic sector by Iranian militants—injured no one, but the Wall Street Journal is now reporting that it "triggered unusual alarm" inside the Trump administration. National Security Adviser John Bolton responded by asking the Pentagon to draw up plans to attack Iran, a request so unusual and a response considered so outsize by many senior administration officials that it "definitely rattled people," one such official tells the Journal. "People were shocked. It was mind-boggling how cavalier they were about hitting Iran." An NSC rep says it simply "coordinates policy and provides the president with options to anticipate and respond to a variety of threats." Bolton has long advocated regime change in Tehran, notes the Journal, and penned a 2015 New York Times op-ed with the headline, "To Stop Iran's Bomb, Bomb Iran." (Read more Iran stories.)

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