US defense officials are claiming fresh intelligence pointing to the looming threat of a possible attack by Iran on US forces and interests in the Middle East.
"There has been consistent intelligence in the last several weeks," an administration official was anonymously cited as saying by CNN. A separate official said the information gathered by military and intelligence agencies was collected through November.
As is typical when vague claims of a new 'Iran threat' is on the horizon there's absolutely nothing in terms of specifics or evidence, just anonymous officials and fear inducing headlines (also via the same intel bureaucrats which gave us the Iraq war).
"The officials would not say in what format the intelligence exists. But in the last several weeks there has been movement of Iranian forces and weapons that the US worries could be put in place for a potential attack, if one is ordered by the Iranian regime, the officials said," the CNN report continued.
The statements referenced intelligence showing Iranian military units and weapons on the move in some places, but noted there's no evidence suggesting an attack order has been given.
Though it's nothing new that a looming Iran attack should be hyped by admin and Pentagon sources, the timing is especially interesting, given the mass protests inside Iran — the biggest since 2009 — which Iranian security forces put down last month.
Tehran officials had accused the US and Israel of seeking to subvert domestic grievances (brought on by a sudden fuel price hike of 50% to 300% in some places) by hijacking demonstrations, which further resulted in the torching of hundreds of banks and gas stations.
Meanwhile the Pentagon has continued a US show of force, recently moving the carrier USS Abraham Lincoln into the Persian Gulf, and sending additional troops to Saudi Arabia, bringing the total reported number to 3,000.
In public statements, the head of the US Central Command, Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, also recently told an audience in Bahrain that CENTCOM believes a new act of aggression is likely coming (after the Sept.14 Saudi Aramco attacks were widely blamed on Iran).
"I would expect that if we look at the past three or four months, it's possible they will do something that is irresponsible. It's possible that they'll lash out at their neighbors," he said. "It is not going to be productive for them in the long term to choose to act out in the military domain. That's the message that we're trying to convey."