Speaking to Fox New in an interview that was aired Wednesday, Trump said he was trying to avoid war with Iran but in case a war broke out it would not involve ground forces.
“It wouldn’t last very long, I can tell you that,” he said during the wide-ranging interview.
“I’m not talking boots on the ground,” Trump added. “I’m not talking, we’re going to send a million soldiers. I’m just saying if something would happen, it wouldn’t last very long.”
The American head of state also defended his decision last week to call off alleged military strikes against Iran, after the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) shot down an intruding US spy drone in its airspace over the Persian Gulf last Thursday.
“I’ve been very nice to them,” he said. “They shot down our drone. I decided not to kill a lot of Iranians. I know a lot of Iranians. I like Iranians so much, and that plays into your decision, too. They’re human beings. They’re people. I didn’t want to kill 150 people.”
Trump claimed after the downing of the RQ-4A drone that he had called off US strikes on three different Iranian sites 10 minutes before they were planned to be launched.
Instead, Washington proceeded to add a series of bizarre sanctions to a series of bans it said it had planned to announce long before.
The new sanctions targeted Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei and senior military commanders. The Trump administration is also set to introduce sanctions against Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in the coming days.
‘US sanctions show desperation in face of Iran’s might’The chief commander of the IRGC says recent US sanctions against senior commanders of the elite military force show Washington’s desperation.
The sanctions and the threats of a war have failed to change Iran’s resolve to defend itself.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Tuesday that Tehran was not after war with Washington, but will give the United States a “decisive” response if it once again violates Iran’s territorial space.
“If the Americans want to violate the waters or airspace of Iran again, Iran’s armed forces have a duty to confront them and they will give a decisive response,” Rouhani said in a telephone conversation with his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron.
IRGC Commander Major General Hossein Salami also said Wednesday that the recent sanctions showed Washington’s desperation and frustration in the face of the Islamic Republic’s power.
To vent its spleen on the Islamic Republic, it was only natural for the US to resort to “illogical and irrational” reactions following Iran’s “flexing muscles” and its deterrent move that shattered Washington’s delusions of grandeur, he added.
Ayatollah Khamenei also reaffirmed that the Iranian nation would not retreat in the face of America’s “cruel sanctions” and “insults” and will continue on the path to progress and prosperity.
“The Iranian nation will not be taken aback by such ugly measures and will not retreat,” the Leader stated.