President Trump Donald John TrumpBusiness, Newsletters and the Fight against Opioids: Why the Universal Postal Union Benefits from Sanders Sanders Supporters Against Approval of Working Families at Warren California Poll: Biden Waterden; Harris Ranks FIFTH MORE On Tuesday night, fired by close ally Senator Lindsay Graham after the South Carolina Republican criticized the president's past approach to Iran, arguing that Tehran views it as a "sign of weakness."
"No Lindsey, it was a sign of power that some people just don't understand!" Trump tweeted after Graham earlier in the day called on the president to take more decisive action against Iran.
No Lindsey, it was a sign of strength that some people just don't understand! https://t.co/EU8AvfH7j9 Pictures19459012 Images – Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 18, 2019
Trump administration officials have blamed Iran for attacking two oil rigs in Saudi Arabia over the weekend
Graham issued a statement Tuesday afternoon the attack, calling for decisive action and claiming Trump's response to the removal of a US drone from surveillance in Tehran in June is insufficient.
Trump authorized a military strike on Iran in response to the dropping of the drone, but said he withdrew it after learning that there would be 150 casualties.
"It is clear to me that such a sophisticated attack would not have happened without Iranian blessing and direct involvement," Graham said of the oilfield attack.
of the deterrence against Iranian aggression, which has apparently been lost, "Graham Conti
Graham applauded the administration for establishing a regional coalition and instructing Congress, but criticized Trump's past response to the drone incident as insufficient.
President Trump on the view of the downing of the US drone is clearly seen by the Iranian regime as a sign of weakness, "Graham said, adding that it was" imperative "that the United States take decisive action to deter further Iranian aggression.
Trump on Monday responded to the attack, saying that Iran was probably the culprit, but that he was awaiting a final evaluation of US intelligence. Trump also said he would like to avoid war with Tehran, while saying that the US is more prepared than any other country for armed conflict.
His remarks suggest a softening of species coming one day after the president said the US was "locked and loaded" after the attack and awaiting final confirmation and direction from Saudi Arabia.
Still, Trump and Graham, who is also ready for re-election in 2020, are seen as close allies and often play golf together. In the past, they have been confronted with foreign policy issues, such as the president's efforts to pull US troops out of Afghanistan.
Pence voiced Trump's comments during a speech at the Heritage Foundation on Tuesday, saying the US would like to avoid war but that the administration was ready to take "whatever it takes" to protect American allies.
"After this irrefutable attack, I promise you, we are ready," Pence said. "We are locked and loaded and ready to defend the interests of our allies. Don't be fooled. "
Trump, who is currently on a fundraising tour in California, has promised to release more details about the drone attack that shut down two major oil facilities in Saudi Arabia on Saturday. Iran has denied responsibility. Tehran-backed Houthi rebels have taken responsibility.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Michael (Mike) Richard Pompeo Hill's report of 12:30: Trump heads to California Pence, says US is "locked up and loaded" to protect US allies -Iran the next steps – Dejaw from the mistakes of the Obama administration? MORE is currently traveling to Saudi Arabia to meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to discuss the attack.
The two will "coordinate efforts to counter Iranian aggression in the region," State Department spokesman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement Tuesday.