Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

President Donald Trump talks to reporters during a briefing with military leaders, including acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Joseph Dunford, Chief of Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson, and others in the Cabinet Room at the White House April 03, 2019 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

'Barreling Towards Another Catastrophic War,' Trump Orders 1,000 More Troops to Middle East to Threaten Iran

"None of this would be happening if Trump didn't back out of the Iran nuclear deal," said Rep. Ilhan Omar

Jake Johnson

With U.N. officials reportedly worried that the United States is planning to carry out a bombing campaign against Iran—a move that ultra-hawkish Sen. Tom Cotton openly advocated over the weekend—the Trump administration late Monday announced the deployment of 1,000 more troops to the Middle East following attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

"Rather than pursuing diplomatic off ramps to avert conflict with Iran, the Trump administration is in the left lane pushing the pedal to the floor, barreling towards another catastrophic war of choice."
—Jon Rainwater, Peace Action

The Trump administration has claimed—on the basis of scarce evidence—that Iran carried out last week's tanker attacks, but Japan and European nations have expressed deep skepticism and called for a thorough investigation. Iran has denied any responsibility for the attacks.

While acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan insisted in a statement that the 1,000 additional troops are being deployed for "defensive" purposes, anti-war critics and members of Congress raised alarm that the Trump administration is rapidly moving closer to an all-out military conflict with Iran.

"Rather than pursuing diplomatic off ramps to avert conflict with Iran, the Trump administration is in the left lane pushing the pedal to the floor, barreling towards another catastrophic war of choice," Jon Rainwater, executive director of Peace Action, said in a statement.

"War with Iran would be a historic disaster, imperiling countless U.S. and Iranian lives and further destabilizing the region," said Rainwater. "We cannot allow the administration to play politics with our foreign policy at the expense of national security."

Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CodePink, declared in response to the troop deployment, "This is the Trump administration's march to war with Iran."

The Pentagon's announcement came just hours after Iran said it may ramp up uranium enrichment in an effort to pressure European nations to provide relief from crippling U.S. sanctions and uphold their end of the nuclear accord, which President Donald Trump unilaterally violated last year.

"None of this would be happening if Trump didn't back out of the Iran nuclear deal," Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) said of the growing threat of war with Iran. "America's response should be to return to the table and reinstate the Iran nuclear deal. Increasing tensions and threats of war serve nobody's interests."

Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) echoed Omar, arguing that Trump's "bad judgment is moving us closer to another war."

In a televised speech on Tuesday, just hours after news of the deployment of more U.S. troops to the Middle East, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani said his country "will not wage war against any nation."

"Those facing us are a group of politicians with little experience," Rouhani said, referring to the Trump administration. "Despite all of the Americans' efforts in the region and their desire to cut off our ties with all of the world and their desire to keep Iran secluded, they have been unsuccessful."


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.

Citing Need for 'New, Inclusive Leadership,' Chuy García Files for Chicago Mayoral Race

"We have an opportunity to elect a trusted and experienced leader with a history of building coalitions and a vision for a brighter future for all Chicagoans," said the Democratic congressman.

Jessica Corbett ·


On Cyber Monday, Climate Activists Take Aim at Fashion Industry

"The fashion industry is one of the largest polluting industries globally. We can all do better, but it's on companies to make this industry better for workers, the planet, and consumers alike."

Jessica Corbett ·


Biden Accused of Selling Out Rail Workers by Urging Congress to Prevent Strike

"Biden is siding with corporate rail bosses over the rank-and-file workers who voted against this agreement," said one progressive commentator after the president urged lawmakers to take action to force through a deal without paid sick leave.

Brett Wilkins ·


Analysis Finds State Legislators Proposed 306 Bills Targeting Trans People in Past 2 Years

"Right-wing state lawmakers are obsessed with taking away the rights of trans people and we're obsessed with knocking them out of public office," said one rights group.

Julia Conley ·


Biden Mulls Sending Long-Range Missiles to Ukraine

While Ukrainians and supporters welcomed Boeing's proposal to arm Ukrainian forces with long-range precision-guided bombs, one anti-war voice accused the American military-industrial complex of "dictating the U.S. foreign policy and profiteering from wars."

Brett Wilkins ·

Common Dreams Logo