Donald Trump: 'If Iran wants to fight, that will be the end of Iran'
The US is "afraid" of war with Iran, the head of Iran's Revolutionary Guard said as tensions between Tehran and Washington intensified over the weekend. Major General Hossein Salami told the Iranian state news agency, IRNA, that the country does not want war. "The difference between us and them is that they are afraid of war and don't have the will for it," he said. His remarks came against a backdrop of increased volatility in the region, with the US sending an aircraft carrier strike group to the Persian Gulf to counter an unspecified threat from Iran. Major General Salami's comments were dismissed by the US president on Twitter. "If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!" Mr Trump tweeted. The US Federal Aviation Administration has urged commercial aircraft to exercise caution when flying over the Persian Gulf, warning they ran the risk of being "misidentified". How Iran has stoked tensions in Gulf A similar misunderstanding in 1988 led to an American warship bringing down an Iran Air flight, killing all 290 people on board. Iraq, meanwhile, has condemned as "political" a decision by US energy giant ExxonMobil to evacuate staff from a southern oil field after Washington ordered personnel to quit its Baghdad embassy. Saudi Arabia responded to the escalating crisis by calling for a Gulf summit, adding that while the country did not want war it would defend itself if hostilities erupted. "The kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region nor does it seek that," Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir told a news conference on Sunday. "It will do what it can to prevent this war and at the same time it reaffirms that in the event the other side chooses war, the kingdom will respond with all force and determination, and it will defend itself and its interests." John Bolton wants tough line with Iran Credit: Joshua Roberts/Reuters In Washington Donald Trump has emerged as a dove within his own administration, telling his acting defence secretary, Patrick Shanahan, that he wants to avoid an armed conflict erupting. It has put the US president at odds with John Bolton, his national security adviser and a long-standing foreign policy hawk, who has made little secret of his desire for regime change in Tehran. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has also sought to lower the temperature by asking European allies to intervene with Iran. Washington's stance on Iran has put it at odds with European allies, notably after it withdrew from the nuclear deal negotiated by the Obama administration. Over the weekend Tulsi Gabbard, an Iraq war veteran and Democratic presidential candidate, rounded on Mr Trump and Mr Pompeo accusing them of leading the country into a war with Iran. "He says he doesn't want it, but the actions of him and his administration, people like John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, tell us a very different story," she said on ABC. "They are setting the stage for a war with Iran that would prove to be far more costly, far more devastating and dangerous than anything that we saw in the Iraq war."
The Latest: Capital murder charge filed in police shooting
AUBURN, Ala. (AP) â The Latest on shootings of police officers in Auburn, Alabama (all times local):
Al Jazeera suspends two journalists over Holocaust report
Qatari state-funded broadcaster Al Jazeera suspended two journalists on Sunday over a video they produced claiming the extent of the Holocaust was being misrepresented by Jews. The clip, posted by Al Jazeera's online AJ+ Arabic service, claimed "the narrative" that the Nazis killed six million Jews was "adopted by the Zionist movement". The video said that "along with others, the Jews faced a policy of systematic persecution which culminated in the Final Solution".
2020 election poll: Joe Biden's lead shrinks to zero against Bernie Sanders in critical Iowa
Joe Biden may be leading national polls among Democratic voters, but a new poll shows his dominance doesnât necessarily extend to Iowa.Mr Biden is matched by Bernie Sanders in the state, a sharp drop from his 11 point lead in a separate poll last month. Both candidates can claim 24 per cent support in the state, which will vote first in the nominating process next year.Mr Biden and Mr Sanders are followed in the new poll by several candidates with significant showings, including Pete Buttigieg (14 per cent), Elizabeth Warren (12 per cent), and Kamala Harris (10 per cent).Reading into the polls just a bit more, Mr Biden has more to worry about than just Mr Sanders, too.Ms Warren stands out as the most liked candidate in the race, with a favourability rating at 78 per cent â the top in the race. She is followed by Mr Sanders, who is the next closest with 71 per cent.âGood news for Elizabeth Warren: her favourability exceeds that of any other candidate in the race and her name recognition is near universal,â said principal pollster Jane Loria in a news release.She continued: âIn some states, we see a large spread between the front-runners and the so-called second-tier in the excitement barometer, but in Iowa the candidates are all pretty tightly clustered. When we ask respondents to identify the five candidates theyâre most excited about, 54% say Warren, followed by Biden (53%), then Harris (53%), Sanders (49%), and Buttigieg (46%)The terrain looks much better for Mr Biden when looking at the other states that follow close after Iowa, however. In New Hampshire, Mr Biden beats Mr Sanders 36 per cent to 18 per cent. In South Carolina, meanwhile, Mr Biden recently got 46 per cent support compared to Mr Sandersâ 15 per cent.But, any fragility in Iowa could have real consequences for Mr Bidenâs third presidential race. The state has an outsized influence on the presidential nominating process, and a loss there would show potentially significant vulnerabilities for the former vice president.The Iowa Starting Line/Change Research Poll was released on Monday, and the Iowa caucuses will be held in January.
This Missile Might be the U.S. Navy's Most Important Weapon in Decades
The Tomahawk and its controversies might make headlines, but as the U.S. Navy re-arms for high-tech warfare, the SM-6 is the missile to watch.The U.S. Navy in late January 2019 confirmed the designation of its newest cruise missile, in the process clarifying its long-term plan for arming its growing fleet of warships.The plan heavily leans on one missile, in particular. It's the SM-6, an anti-aircraft weapon that quickly is evolving to perform almost every role the Navy assigns to a missile.(This first appeared earlier in the year.)The Navy dubbed the newest version of the venerable Tomahawk cruise missile the "Block V" model, Jane's reported. There are two separate variants of the Block V missile, one with an anti-ship warhead and another with a warhead the Navy optimized for striking targets on land.Raytheon's Tomahawk has been the subject of controversy in Washington, D.C. In order to save money the Obama administration wanted to pause production of the long-range missile, which since the 1980s has been the Navy's main weapon for striking land targets from the sea.Congress overruled the Obama administration and continued buying Tomahawks for roughly $1 million apiece, adding potentially hundreds of the missiles to the thousands the fleet already possesses.