Peace through strength…
President Donald Trump raised the stakes with Iran again this morning by dashing off a tweet.
The tweet comes a day after the new president dramatically raised the possibility of military action against Iran over its missiles test on Thursday saying ‘nothing is off the table’ amid news that a new round of sanctions could be coming within hours.
Sources told the Associated Press that up to two dozen Iranian individuals, companies and possibly government agencies could be penalized as part of the move.
Action could come as early as later Friday, said the officials and others with knowledge of the decision. The individuals weren’t authorized to discuss the unannounced sanctions publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
Gen. Michael Flynn told reporters during a White House press briefing that the administration ‘condemns such actions by Iran that undermine security, prosperity and stability throughout and beyond the Middle East that puts American lives at risk.’
‘As of today, we are officially putting Iran on notice,’ he said.
Trump used the phrase when asked directly if military action was possible, and after a series of angry tweets about how the Islamic republic tested a ballistic missile – something the nuclear bargain it struck with Barack Obama explicitly forbids.
It also emerged Thursday that Iran has tested a cruise missile called ‘Sumar’ that is capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
The development was reported by German newspaper Die Welt reported Thursday, citing unspecified intelligence sources.
Trump’s personal involvement began earl on Thursday morning when he used social media to issue an explicit warning to Tehran.
Trump has been openly hostile to the terms of the Obama-Tehran nuclear deal, saying during his presidential campaign that it was ‘stupid,’ ‘a disgrace,” and ‘the worst deal ever negotiated.’
His tweets likely stand as the first time a head of state has used social media to threaten a foreign country.
They were met with contempt by the Iranian regime.
A top adviser to the Iranian supreme leader said the country will not yield to ‘useless’ US threats from ‘an inexperienced person’ over its ballistic missile program.
Ali Akbar Velayati said, who is a senior counsel to Iran’s most powerful man Ayatollah Ali Khamenei hit back.
‘This is not the first time that an inexperienced person has threatened Iran,’ he said.
‘The American government will understand that threatening Iran is useless.’
The report of a cruise missile test in the German newspaper said the Sumar cruise missile was built in Iran and traveled around 375 miles in its first known successful test.
The missile is believed to be capable of carrying nuclear weapons and may have a range of 1,200 to 1,800 miles, the paper said, citing intelligence sources.
Cruise missiles are harder to counter than ballistic missiles since they fly at lower altitudes and can evade enemy radar, confounding missile defense missiles and hitting targets deep inside an opponent’s territory.
But the biggest advantage from Iran’s point of view, a security expert told Die Welt, was that cruise missiles are not mentioned in any United Nations resolutions that ban work on ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
There has been no explicit response from Iran or from Washington on the cruise missile disclosure.
However, Trump’s National Security Advisor had issued his own stern warning to Tehran’s mullahs on Wednesday. –Daily Mail