Trump: 'They want to push us into war'
President Donald Trump stood against his national security team by deciding not to go ahead with retaliatory strikes on Iran earlier this week, APA reports citing The Wall Street Journal.
"These people want to push us into a war, and it's so disgusting. We don't need any more wars", the commander-in-chief is alleged to have told one confidant about his advisers, per the WSJ.
While lamenting the loss of a $130-million drone shot down by an Iranian missile, Trump chose not to retaliate because he reportedly thought that American voters would have been more outraged over human losses than lost funds.
The White House hasn't commented on the claims so far.
The report comes just a day after the US president told reporters that he has confidence in National Security Adviser John Bolton even though he disagreed with him on a number of issues, including his policies in the Middle East.
"I disagree very much with John Bolton. His attitude in the Middle East and Iraq - going into Iraq, I think that was a big mistake and I've been proven right but I've been against that forever. John Bolton is doing a very good job but he takes a generally tough posture. I have other people that don't take that posture, but the only one that matters is me", he said, while describing Bolton as a "hawk".
Asked about his decision not to attack Iran, Trump said, "Everyone was saying I'm a warmonger. Now they're saying I'm a dove".
Addressing the potential casualties of a strike against the Islamic Republic, the president said that "anything is a lot when they shoot down an unmanned [drone]. I didn't like it", and added that Iran was "very wise" for not hitting a manned aircraft and "we appreciate" the decision.
The New York Times earlier reported that Trump's national security team, including Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and CIA Director Gina Haspel, unanimously pushed for a missile strike against Iran in response to the downing of a US drone on 20 June.
Trump decided not to go ahead with the strike just 10 minutes before it was supposed to be carried out, explaining in a tweet - and later in an NBC interview - that the death of approximately 150 people was disproportionate to the loss of an unmanned aerial vehicle. Instead, he announced a new set of "major" additional sanctions against the Islamic Republic that will take effect on Monday, 24 June.
Reacting to Trump's move, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said on Saturday that the country would defend its borders "regardless of any decision" that Washington may take.
The strike on Iran was supposed to be Washington's response to the downing of a US Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk spy drone on 20 June by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Tehran maintains that the UAV violated the country's airspace in the southern Hormozgan Province and was warned several times to change its course prior to being brought down. Meanwhile, the US claims the drone was operating over international waters in the Strait of Hormuz at the time.
While slamming the incident as a dangerous provocation, the Iranian side also said that its air defence troops refrained from shooting down a US reconnaissance plane with 35 airmen on board that was flying not far from the drone to avoid causalties.
The episode adds up to already sour relations between the two countries that have gone into a downward spiral since the US unilaterally pulled out from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal in May 2018 and re-imposed sanctions against the country.
In light of mounting tensions with Tehran, Washington has likewise boosted its military presence in the Middle East, deploying an aircraft carrier strike group, a bomber task force, and 1,000 additional troops to the region to send a "clear and unmistakable" message to Iran.
Tehran has strongly condemned the US military build-up and stressed that while the nation does not seek war with Washington, it will "resist" aggressive moves.
Ibrahim Kalin: "Turkey will continue playing an active role in the newest history of Caucasus"
Head of state: "Armenia is a defeated country, Azerbaijan is a victorious country"
Azerbaijani President: "They believed that their patrons would always defend them, stand behind them and fight for them"
President: "We have won the information war, we have won the war on the battlefield, we have won the war in the information space, we have won the war in the political arena"
Azerbaijani President: "Hated enemy cut down, looted and sold trees"
President Ilham Aliyev: "Azerbaijan has taken the necessary steps to restore its territorial integrity"
President Ilham Aliyev: "Armenia is a terrorist state, and there are many signs of this terror"
President Ilham Aliyev: "They have destroyed everything, as if a savage tribe had passed through"
Azerbaijani President: "First of all, all the damage will be calculated with the participation of international experts"
President: "The occupation of Kalbajar district is the direct responsibility of the then ruling Popular Front of Azerbaijan"
Azerbaijani President: "Those who want to interfere in our work or to accuse us of something should first of all look in the mirror"
Azerbaijani President: "Preliminary instructions have already been given in connection with the restoration of the railway to the Nakhchivan"
Azerbaijani President: "Historical sites and nature of Kalbajar have been severely damaged"
Azerbaijani President: "Kalbajar district has been liberated from occupation today"
Azerbaijani President addresses nation - UPDATED
Azerbaijani President addresses nation - LIVE
Russia records 23 675 coronavirus cases, 507 deaths over past day
Head of Working Group: "580 civilian houses and facilities in Aghdam, damaged as a result of war, reviewed"
Turkish Defence Minsitry shares post on liberation of Kalbajar from occupation
Parking Master Plan for Baku to be prepared
Transportation of commercial gas via TAP to be started at the end of this year
Armenia records 1,563 new coronavirus cases, 38 deaths over the past day
Georgia records 3,071 coronavirus cases, 34 deaths over past day
Italian companies are interested in participating in the restoration and reconstruction work of the liberated territories of Azerbaijan from occupation
Azerbaijani Parliament’s speaker: “Azerbaijan has implemented one more document of UN SC”
Turkish Embassy congratulates Azerbaijani people on liberation of Kalbajar from occupation
Global COVID-19 cases exceed 60 million
Price of Azerbaijani oil exceeds USD 48
Ministry of Defense releases new video footage of the entry of the Azerbaijan Army Units to the Kalbajar region - VIDEO
Azerbaijan transported more than 175 mln. barrels of oil through territory of Turkey this year
75 more coronavirus patients die in Moscow in past day
Price of Brent oil exceeds $ 48
All-time high number of coronavirus cases registered worldwide in past week, says WHO
Biden becomes first presidential candidate to win more than 80 million votes
The directions of the Azerbaijani Army's entry into Kalbajar have been determined - PHOTO - VIDEO
Oil prices rally further on vaccine optimism despite inventory rise
Trump pardons Thanksgiving turkeys
6 Somali special forces soldiers killed in IED attack
Biden says he does not want to see a guarded border between Ireland, U.K
Italy reports record COVID-19 deaths
Turkey reports over 7,300 more COVID-19 patients
Biden introduces Cabinet picks of his administration
Units of the Azerbaijan Army entered the Kalbajar region
Turkey to respond to unlawful search of cargo ship
Erdogan and Putin discussed Karabakh - UPDATED
Armenian servicemen blew up military unit building while leaving Kalbajar - VIDEO
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev had a phone conversation with President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin
Turkey: EU arms embargo operation flawed from start
Iran sees foreign firms returning if U.S. lifts sanctions
Director General of ICESCO sends a letter to Azerbaijani President
Armenian servicemen blew up military unit building while leaving Kalbajar - VIDEO
Azerbaijani MoD releases aerial video of the Shusha city - VIDEO
Ministry of Defense releases video footage of liberated from the occupation Abdal and Gulabli villages of Aghdam region - VIDEO
Azerbaijani servicemen help Armenians to leave Gulabli village of Aghdam - VIDEO
Armenians target Azerbaijan's residential settlements, civilian population, and civilian facilities - PHOTOSESSION
Azerbaijani MP suggests to establish shelters for beggars
Azerbaijan commemorates Khojaly genocide - PHOTOSESSION
14 years pass since establishment of the Ministry of Emergency Situations: They always come to your aid in any difficult moments - PHOTOSESSION - VIDEO
First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva attended opening ceremony of rebuilt Azerbaijan pavilion at Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy in Moscow - UPDATED
Prosecutor General’s Office: Most of the videos about insulting actions against the corpses of Armenian servicemen are fake
Special quarantine regime in Azerbaijan extended until December 28
Major General rank conferred to Kanan Seyidov- ORDER
More than a hundred people have contracted an unknown disease in Senegal