Small Wars Journal

‘I Stopped It’: Inside Trump’s Last-Minute Reversal on Striking Iran

‘I Stopped It’: Inside Trump’s Last-Minute Reversal on Striking Iran by Toluse Olorunnipa, Josh Dawsey, Karoun Demirjian and Dan Lamothe – Washington Post

The plans had been drawn, the targets set, and a single word from the commander in chief would have activated the U.S. military to strike a foreign adversary. But President Trump was having second thoughts.

After giving his top Pentagon officials permission to prepare for U.S. military strikes against Iran, Trump convened his top advisers in the Oval Office on Thursday evening and began asking crucial questions just minutes before the operation was set to commence, according to officials familiar with the episode.

What are the potential risks, he asked. How many people could be killed? What could go wrong?

Trump had already been briefed in detail on such questions earlier in the day, including a Pentagon estimate of up to 150 Iranian casualties. But — with national security adviser John Bolton joining the debate arguing strenuously in favor of the strikes — the president was asking about them again…

Read on.