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Official Claims U.S. Had Advance Warning Of Iran’s Missile Strikes, Report Says

By  Josh Hammer
ARLINGTON, VA DECEMBER 20: Secretary of Defense Mark Esper holds an end of year press conference at the Pentagon on December 20, 2019 in Arlington, Virginia. Esper and Milley fielded questions on a wide range of topics, including the situation in North Korea and a recent Washington Post referred to as the "Afghanistan Papers."
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

According to Fox News, at least one U.S. official in Iraq claims the U.S. military had advance notice of Iran’s tepid and futile missile strikes last night that were targeted at Iraqi military bases hosting U.S. troops.

“U.S. military officials were warned about Iran’s pending ballistic missile strike ‘when the air defense systems went active’ shortly before the attack was launched, a U.S. official in Baghdad told Fox News on Wednesday,” the outlet reported.

“U.S. intelligence picked up ‘chatter” from Iran and inside Iraq, tipping off American forces to a strike around 1:30 a.m. local time — or 5:30 p.m. ET,” the outlet continued. “Soon after, Iran launched more than a dozen short-range ballistic missiles into Iraq, striking military bases housing American and coalition troops.”

“That warning was not a surprise to us,” the U.S. official, according to Fox News. “We already knew it was coming.”

Furthermore, according to Fox News, Pentagon officials told the outlet that “the advance warning of the Iranian missile attack is the reason Defense Secretary Mark Esper held a hasty press conference” yesterday.

The missile strikes, which Fox News characterizes as “most brazen direct assault on America since the 1979 seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran,” took place last night. “U.S. officials confirmed to Fox News on Tuesday that Iran is firing multiple missiles at U.S. bases and targets throughout Iraq in response to the U.S. killing Iranian terrorist leader Qassem Soleimani,” The Daily Wire’s Ryan Saavedra reported at the time.

Saavedra quoted Fox News’ Jennifer Griffin, who noted that the missile strikes were expected: “This is something we have been expecting all afternoon. There were situation room meetings as well meetings with top officials here at the Pentatgon. There was a lot of chatter, we were told intelligence suggesting that the Iranians would strike at U.S. bases in Iraq after the that mourning for Qassem Soleimani ended earlier today.”

President Donald Trump addressed the nation today, in the aftermath of the feckless Iranian strikes last night, as The Daily Wire’s James Barrett reported earlier.

“As long as I am president of the United States, Iran will never be allowed to have a nuclear weapon,” Trump began his speech.

“I am pleased to inform you, the American people should be extremely grateful and happy: No Americans were harmed in last night’s attack by the Iranian regime,” the 45th commander-in-chief continued. “We suffered no casualties, all of our soldiers are safe, and only minimal damage was sustained at our military bases.”

“Last week, we took decisive action to stop a ruthless terrorist from threatening American lives,” Trump added. “At my direction the United States military eliminated the world’s top terrorist, Qassem Soleimani. As the heads of the Quds Force, Soleimani was personally responsible for some of the absolutely worst atrocities. He trained terrorist armies, including Hezbollah, launching terrorist strikes against civilian targets. He fueled bloody civil wars all across the region.”

Earlier today, Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro wrote approvingly of the president’s seeming decision not to plan a retaliation for the mullahs’ largely symbolic overnight salvo:

At this point, it behooves the administration to allow Iran to save face. No Americans were killed; the base was not American. What’s more, the Iranians will seek the last word in this latest exchange — which means that unless the United States is truly willing to go to war, we ought to let the Iranians save face with this tepid response.

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