Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

U.S. national security adviser John Bolton attends a media briefing during the United Nations General Assembly on September 24, 2018 in New York City. (Photo: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)

'Itching for a War,' Bolton Threatens Iran With 'Unrelenting Force' as US Bombers Deployed to Middle East

"The latest indication that this administration is running full speed directly into a major war with Iran."

Jake Johnson

In a late Sunday statement warning—without any evidence whatsoever—of "troubling and escalatory" actions by the Iranian government, U.S. national security adviser John Bolton used the scheduled deployment of an American aircraft carrier and bomber task force to the Middle East to threaten Iran with military action.

"Bolton wants war. He will do any provocation to get war."
—Trita Parsi, National Iranian American Council

The United States, said Bolton, "is deploying the USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and a bomber task force to the U.S. Central Command region to send a clear and unmistakable message to the Iranian regime that any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force."

Foreign policy analysts and international observers were quick to point out that the Lincoln Strike Group's deployment was announced nearly a month ago—a fact critics highlighted as further evidence that Bolton is willing to use any and every opportunity to move the U.S. closer to war with Iran.

According to The Guardian, the U.S. "withdrew its B-1 bombers from the Middle East in March for maintenance and upgrades amid concerns the bomber force was over-stretched. While such changes in global deployment are made regularly, it is rare for the announcement of such deployments to be made by a national security advisor rather than the Pentagon."

"Bolton wants war. He will do any provocation to get war," tweeted Trita Parsi, founder of the National Iranian American Council.

Stephen Miles, director of Win Without War, said Bolton's statement is "the latest indication that this administration is running full speed directly into a major war with Iran."

"This is Bush and Iraq in 2002," said Miles. "The time to stop their disastrous war plans is now!"

Bolton's inflammatory statement came as the U.S. continues to intensify sanctions against Iran as part of its so-called "maximum pressure" campaign, which is directed by the national security adviser and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Following Bolton's statement late Sunday, Pompeo—also without citing a shred of evidence—echoed Bolton's claim of "escalatory actions from the Iranians."

"The Trump regime continues to threaten the planet with impunity," tweeted journalist Ben Norton.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

'Biggest Win for Tax Fairness' in Decades: Progressives Cheer Reforms in IRA, Demand More

"While this bill establishes desperately needed changes to our tax laws and IRS funding, it is still a far cry from the systemic changes that we need in our society to rectify the hold the rich still have on every level of our economy."

Kenny Stancil ·


'Care Can't Wait': IRA a Good Start, Progressives Say, But More Is Needed

"Americans deserve a full loaf of bread," said health justice advocate Ady Barkan.

Kenny Stancil ·


'I'm Back': Fetterman Returns to Campaign Trail Following May Stroke

"I'm not only grateful to be alive, but also for the campaign we're building together," said the Democratic nominee for Pennsylvania's open U.S. Senate seat.

Kenny Stancil ·


Because Climate Science 'Does Not Grade on a Curve,' Experts Says IRA Not Enough

"There is an urgent need for much more aggressive and far-reaching measures to prevent climate chaos," said the head of one progressive consumer advocacy group.

Brett Wilkins ·


'Game-Changer and Reason for Hope': House Passes Inflation Reduction Act

"We've got more to do," Rep. Pramila Jayapal said on the House floor. "But today, let's celebrate this massive investment for the people."

Jake Johnson ·

Common Dreams Logo