WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump approved a deployment of US forces to Saudi Arabia on Friday.
The Pentagon says the U.S. will deploy additional troops and military equipment to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to beef up security, as President Donald Trump has at least for now decided against any immediate military strike on Iran in response to the attack on the Saudi oil industry.
Defense Secretary Mark Esper says this is a first step, and he is not ruling out additional moves down the road. He says it’s a response to requests from the Saudis and the UAE to help improve their air and missile defenses.
Esper and Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, say details of the deployments will be determined over the coming days.
Trump is signaling that he’s not inclined to authorize an immediate military strike on Iran in response to the attacks on the Saudi oil industry, saying he believes showing restraint “shows far more strength” and he wants to avoid an all-out war.
Trump has laid out new sanctions on the Iranian central bank.
Trump spoke just before he gathered his national security team at the White House to discuss how to respond to the weekend drone and missile attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.