Bolton: Iran acts as if Obama administration is still in power
In an interview with the Washington Free Beacon, national security adviser Job Bolton said the Iranian regime is "acting as if it's the Obama administration and that they don't really fear American capabilities. And they are in deep economic trouble in Iran as a result of the president's termination of the nuclear deal and the reimposition of sanctions."
Regarding the deployment of forces, Bolton said: “The National Security Strategy lists Iran as one of the four top threats, and we just need to be sure we've got the capability to deter them from these kinds of activities, threatening American lives and facilities, threatening the international oil market.”
Bolton also warned Iran against any provocation: "They would be making a big mistake if they doubted the president's resolve on this."
He continued: “We're very concerned about the dangers of the Quds Force and Iranian intelligence operatives and others through surrogates—Shia militia groups in Iraq, the Houthi in Yemen posing threats to commerce in the Red Sea, targets in Saudi Arabia, American personnel and facilities in Iraq, the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, and in Afghanistan."
Bolton added: “The intelligence indicates the Quds Force and Iranian intelligence are planning attacks on these targets carried out in "deniable" ways designed to mask Tehran as the source.
The White House national security adviser clarified that the United States is willing to talk to Iranian leaders to ease tensions but also is set for retaliatory action against Iranian military provocations.