The Trump administration is sending U.S. troops to the Middle East in response to the attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil supply, Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced Friday at a press conference.
At the request of the Saudi kingdom and the United Arab Emirates, President Trump has ordered a “moderate deployment” of troops to the two nations as a “defensive” posture against Iran, who Esper blamed for the “escalation of violence” in the region, including the latest attack on Saudi Aramco allegedly carried out by Houthi rebels in Yemen.
“The president has approved the deployment of U.S. forces, which will be defensive in nature and primarily focused on air and missile defense,” Esper told reporters. “The United States does not seek conflict with Iran.”
Though few specific details were provided, the New York Times reports the deployment number would be “in the hundreds, not thousands.”
Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the precise number of American troops headed to the region had not been determined, but that it would be a “moderate deployment” in the hundreds, not thousands.
Additionally, military strikes are presently not on the table, as Trump wants to avoid stoking war, but they haven’t been ruled out in the final equation.
Although the administration is not ruling out military strikes, senior officials indicated that, for now, the president was content to remain within the parameters of defense, not offense. Pressed by reporters about whether the administration was still considering so-called kinetic action, or military strikes, Mr. Esper said, “That’s not where we are right now.”
Though Trump’s decision likely doesn’t go far enough for the military-industrial complex, they likely view this strategic move as a positive development for their long-terms plans to topple Iran, which was outlined by General Wesley Clark in 2007.
Alex Jones breaks down the rising tensions in Iran, and what it means for warfare on the global stage.