RNA - Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Robert C. O’Brien, the national security adviser, are the ones pushing for military escalation with Iran, New York Times reported Saturday.
Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper and Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, meanwhile, oppose the increase in tensions.
The war hawks blame Iran for a rocket attack last week on US-occupied Camp Taji about 27 kilometers north of the Iraqi Baghdad, in which one British and two American personnel were allegedly killed.
The report noted that, “the Pentagon and intelligence agencies did not have clear evidence that the attacks… had been ordered by Iran.”
President Donald Trump brought US and Iran to the brink of war after ordering the assassination of Major General Qassem Soleimani on January 2.
Trump’s escalation of tensions in the region has strained ties between Washington and Baghdad further, making the Iraqi government seek withdrawal of US forces from the Muslim country.
“American officials say there is little appetite among the president and some of his top advisers for a dangerous escalation with Iran,” read the report.
Tehran has time and again asserted that it stands ready to defend its interests in the region.