Published: Mon, January 14, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Admin requested plans past year to attack Iran

Admin requested plans past year to attack Iran

An unnamed "former senior US administration official" said the request "definitely rattled people".

Last year, Bolton quickly pulled the US out of the nuclear-containment deal brokered during the Obama administration and tightened economic sanctions against Iran - moves that were championed on the campaign trail in 2016 by then-candidate Trump.

Bolton made the request after three mortars were fired into Baghdad's diplomatic zone - where the USA embassy is located - by Iran-affiliated militants, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In addition, two rockets were fired toward the secure compound of the U.S. Consulate in city of Basra, in southwest Iraq. But it isn't clear if the proposals were provided to the White House, whether Mr. Trump knew of the request or whether serious plans for a US strike against Iran took shape at that time. According to the Wall Street Journal, the request was made after several shells landed in Baghdad's green zone, near the United States embassy last September.

Bolton, well-known for his past cries to attack Iran, has made clear to other administration officials "that he personally supports regime change in Iran", the Journal reported.

A National Security Council spokesman told the newspaper the council "coordinates policy and provides the president with options to anticipate and respond to a variety of threats".

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

Alongside the requests in regards to Iran, the NSC asked the Pentagon to provide the White House with options to respond with strikes in Iraq and Syria as well, according to people familiar with the talks, the WSJ said.

The Pentagon complied with the National Security Council's request to develop options for striking Iran, the officials said.

"The United States will hold the regime accountable for any attack that results in the injury to our personnel or damage to United States' government facilities" the White House said. Before he took office in April Mr Bolton was known for his...

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