US Department of Defense officials are expected to brief US President Donald Trump’s national security team on a plan to send thousands of troops to the Middle East to further deter Iran, several MSM outlets report.
The rumor of the deployment comes a day after Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan announced that Iran’s possibility of attack on Americans was defeated.
Unnamed US officials told CNN’s Barbara Starr that no official decision about the deployment have been made.
— Barbara Starr (@barbarastarrcnn) May 22, 2019
“They also say all the troops might not be needed at once. Some could be sent quickly as a deterrence measure, others might only be sent if tensions rise to the point the US believes an attack is imminent.”
The alleged increase request was made by US Central Command, which was designated as a terrorist organization by the Iranian parliament.
According to CNN, in addition to the troops, other military capabilities would also possibly be deployed to the Middle East. These include, “additional ballistic missile defense systems, Tomahawk cruise missiles on submarines, and surface ships with land attack capabilities for striking at a long range.”
CNN previously reported that US officials calculate more than 100,000 troops would be needed for a comprehensive strike against Iran. In that scenario, the US would try to destroy Iran’s air defenses, warships and missiles before striking nuclear targets.
And it also followed rumors that the US was planning to deploy 120,000 troops to counter Iran, which have since been rebuked.
Reuters reported that the number of troops possibly to be deployed is 5,000.
The Pentagon declined to comment.
“As a matter of longstanding policy, we are not going to discuss or speculate on potential future plans and requests for forces,” Commander Rebecca Rebarich, a Pentagon spokeswoman said.
According to the Associated Press, the number of troops to possibly be deployed is 10,000.
AP tried to confirm its information, but received the exact same response Reuters got, but from another individual.
Air Force Col. Patrick Ryder, spokesman for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, declined to comment, saying, “As a matter of long-standing policy, we are not going to discuss or speculate on potential or alleged future operations or plans.”
Democrat Senator Seth Moulton told Task & Purpose after being briefed by Shanahan and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on May 21st that he was even more concerned that the Trump administration was looking for an excuse to get into a fight with Iran.
“Everything I have said to date about how concerned I am with this administration’s push toward war – the fact that there are certain people in the administration who are pushing for regime change in Iran – was reinforced by this briefing,” said Moulton.
Around the same time as the deployment rumors, former US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis cautioned against war with Iran in his first public remarks since he left office. He called for the military to buy time for diplomats to reach a solution with Iran, rather than undertaking aggressive action.
“The United States should buy time to keep peace and stability and allow diplomats to work diplomacy on how to keep peace for one more hour, one more day, one more week, a month or a year,” Mattis said.
“Iran’s behavior must change,” Mattis added, “[but] the military must work to buy time for diplomats to work their magic.”
In a speech that, in fact, had a lot of common sense in it, Mattis said the following:
“We’re going to have to work together as nations to respect each other’s differences but throughout this terrorism that is growing, it is not going away; it’s growing in the other direction, we see it spreading in North Africa, and we see what’s going on now as it spreads deeper into South Asia.
We’re going to have to figure out how to do this. We don’t have to be perfect nations, each one of us. We’re going to have to protect what we have and we all work on our own nations to make them better. But I’m going to be spending a lot of time studying how do we get more nations to work together and see a way for the world with less disparity. If this terrorism continues, eventually there will be a time that the terrorists get their hands on weapons of mass destruction. And we must not let that happen.
We need to hold fast to each other. We need to engage more with each other.”
MORE ON THE TOPIC:
- Pentagon Announced Victory Over The “Iranian Threat of Attacks Against Americans”
- Rocket Hits Near Empty US Embassy in Baghdad, US Blames Iran