US Stance On Iran ''Deterrence, Not About War'': Pentagon Chief

Trump earlierdismissed reports that he was trying to initiate negotiations with Iran in thewake of usa withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, tightening sanctions againstTehran and even blacklisting the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

Democrats are particularly concerned the Trump administration may try to rely on almost 20-year-old war authorisations rather than seek fresh approval from Congress for any action. Now their goal is to prevent further escalation.

"The appeasement strategy against Iran is over", he declared after the briefing.

Republicans and Democrats were directly at odds over whether the administration's recent show of force is a potentially risky escalation, or legitimate deterrence. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., on Monday.

Shanahan disputed such characterizations in comments to reporters at the Capitol.

After the Senate meeting, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said they had told lawmakers the recent attacks on shipping and a pipeline in the Middle East were directed by the Iranian government and that USA officials had detected worrisome communication between Tehran and a Shi'ite militia that prompted the military to quickly relocate an aircraft carrier.

Top administration officials briefed the House and Senate in two closed-door sessions for all members, presenting evidence that Iran may be poised to attack US military and diplomatic personnel in the Middle East.

"Our choice is resistance only", Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said, referring to the current political tensions with the USA during a meeting with the Ulama, the country's top religious body, on Monday.

FILE - FILE - The USS Arlington arrives on the Hudson River in New York, May 23, 2018.

The Minister also criticized the USA for sending the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Persian Gulf.

Iran, meanwhile, announced that it had quadrupled its uranium-enrichment production capacity.

Axios reported earlier this month that Israel warned the United States of a possible Iranian attack during talks held between White House officials and an Israeli delegation. "#NeverThreatenAnIranian. Try respect-it works!"

FILE - Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, center, answers questions in Tokyo, May 16, 2019.

Since then, the Trump administration has pursued a "maximum pressure" campaign against Tehran, which it accuses of being a destabilising actor in the Middle East.

"We're ready to respond if we have to". They are not showing any signs of backing down from their provocative behavior.

About half of Americans participating in a recent USA poll said they believed their country was headed toward war with Iran in the not-so-distant future, and many blamed the policies of President Donald Trump. "I don't think they [administration officials] have any good answers".

"I'm listening to Republicans twist the Iran intel to make it sound like Iran is taking unprovoked, offensive measures against the US and our allies".

"There was specific credible evidence of a malign interest on the part Iran and as a result of that, our intelligence community had a high degree of confidence that something might occur that would be of detriment to our personnel", Senator Mitt Romney, a Republican, told reporters. 'Faced withsteady, consistent & credible stream of information indicating serious threatfrom #IRGC proxy forces, he has positioned United States military in the region to defendAmericans & respond to any attack.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, meanwhile, said on Tuesday that the U.S. military was creating risks by crowding ships and aircraft into the region, although Iran doesn't intend to attack anyone.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, who called for clarification on Iran from the White House earlier this week, had this to say after the highly classified briefing. We've been attacked for years by Iran. "Now, we are at a point in time when we're pushing back against the regime". During two years of his presidency, he also quit the hard-fought 2015 nuclear deal and re-imposed sweeping sanctions on Iran's economy.

Other countries have also become increasingly nervous.

  • Leroy Wright