President Trump denied a recent New York Times report that the Pentagon was planning to deploy over 120,000 troops to the Middle East to counter Iranian threats throughout the region; labeling the article “fake news. “
“I think it’s fake news, OK? Now, would I do that? Absolutely. But we have not planned for that. Hopefully we’re not going to have to plan for that. And if we did that, we’d send a hell of a lot more troops than that,” Trump told reporters at the White House.
The Times initially reported the White House was planning the deployment in response to Iran’s plot to attack US targets throughout the region.
DEVELOPING: US Sends Aircraft Carrier to Middle East After Iran ‘Planned Attacks’ on American Forces
The Trump administration deployed an additional aircraft carrier to the Middle East over the weekend after intelligence reports showed Iranian forces were plotting attacks against American troops in the region.
“The United States is deploying an aircraft carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Middle East on short notice in response to ‘clear indications’ Iran and Iranian proxies were planning an attack on U.S. forces in the region,” reports ABC News.
“Late Sunday night, the White House made a surprise announcement that the USS Abraham Lincoln and a bomber task force were being deployed in response to unspecified ‘troubling and escalatory indications and warnings,’” adds the report.
The move comes days after the White House designated the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a “foreign terrorist organization” and unveiled new sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
Read the full report at ABC News.
IRAN ON EDGE: Pentagon ‘Presents Plan’ to Send 120,000 Troops to the Middle East if Tehran Attacks
The Department of Defense presented a plan to the Trump administration this week that calls for the deployment of more than 120,000 American troops should Iran attack US targets or personnel in the region.
“At the direction of national security adviser John Bolton, acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan last week presented top White House national security officials with a plan to send up to 120,000 troops to the Middle East in the event that Iran ‘attack American forces or accelerate work on nuclear weapons,’” reports Axios.
The move comes days after the White House deployed an additional aircraft carrier to the Persian Gulf after intelligence agencies warned Iran was relocating short-range missiles by sea.
“European allies who met with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday said that they worry that tensions between Washington and Tehran could boil over, possibly inadvertently,” adds the New York Times.
Read the full report here.