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By Andrea Mitchell
WASHINGTON – As Secretary of State Mike Pompeo acted as secretary, the drums of war against Iran on Thursday and American warships sang against the region, asked a reporter president Donald Trump if there is a risk of military confrontation.
After the necessary caution that "I guess you can always say it" Trump added, "hopefully, it won't happen." Since in proposals that were particularly quiet, Trump suggested that he welcome calls with Tehran: [1
It was a striking departure from his state secretary's rhetoric and his national security advisers, who both intensified their warnings that the US would oppose Iran against any attack on US interests by Ira n proxies.
For all its bellicosity against Tehran – including tweeting to its leaders in all-caps in July, that they will "HAVE COMPLIED WITH THE LIKES THAT HAVE COMPLETE HISTORY HAVE BEEN ALREADY TAKEN BEFORE" If they threaten the US – Trump has always been ambivalent about the use of force to achieve regime change . In Iran's case, he seems to believe that the offensive sanctions will eventually force his government to accept a tighter nuclear trade than that negotiated by President Barack Obama.
In fact, the global embargo on Iran's oil exports that the administration is now facing threatens to crush Iran's economy by eliminating oil purchases, even by America's closest allies. The UK, France and Germany have so far failed to create a solution to bypass the US banking system to continue buying Iran's oil. Reluctantly, they will have to stop dealing with Iran if they want continued access to the much more important US markets and the US financial system that dominates world trade.
Iran has worried European allies by breaking out parts of the nuclear agreement, and threatens to begin enriching uranium for arms quality in the coming months. It would leave the multinational landmark agreement in tatters.
But the president's hawkian circle of advisers may well underestimate Iran's decision and resilience. With the election in the US election, Tehran can decide to wait for the Trump administration. And while the president is confident of his powers of conviction if he was in a room with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, how has the "concept" worked so far with North Korea's Kim Jong Un?
Moreover, unlike North Korea, Iran does not have a one-man rule. Rouhani must not only respond to the senior leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, but also the powerful revolutionary guard, recently named by the State Department as a terrorist group, the first time an official governmental organization was so appointed.
Under these circumstances, negotiations between the two governments are all but impossible. And Pompeo said last week that he didn't think Iran's government could ever change enough to cater to the administration.
Trump beat a hook of independence from the hawks on Thursday when he asked for reports that he was not entirely satisfied with the National Security Advisor John Bolton's hard advice, said: "He has strong opinions on things but it is okay. John on things, which is amazing. … I have John Bolton and I have other people who are a little more stupid and finally I make the decision. "
But some so-called pigeons in the president's national security law have long gone, and is not clarifying which other points of view can come through the president.
The overall concern for critics is the risk of miscalculation from either side: an increasingly isolated and entrenched US president and a regime in Tehran that is both hostile to the United States and feels deceived, has given up its growing nuclear capacity without the promised economic rewards. .
A chorus of the Senate Democrats on foreign relations and armed committees now warns that the president's policy could risk something that he himself does not want: an unnecessary war.