Top Pentagon Official Warns Iran May Attack US Targets

Undersecretary says US sent 'blunt' signals threatening Iran

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Undersecretary of Defense for Policy John Rood once again emphasized what the Pentagon tends to want to emphasize lately, the possibility of a war with Iran.

Rood told reporters the US “remains concerned about potential Iranian aggression,” saying he has seen indicators that Iran might attack US targets in the Middle East. This comes amid reports the US wants to send more troops to the Middle East.

As a practical matter the US has been hyping the risk of Iranian aggression for generations, and more specifically talking up the idea in the past six months, generally to justify large troop level increases.

But beyond just justifying expenses, the talk of Iranian threats also serves itself to inflame tensions, and bolster expectations that a war is on the horizon. Moreover, it paints Iran as the aggressor when there is little question that the US would be attacking Iran, and not the other way around.

Rood’s comments echo recent ones from top generals, who portrayed US deployments as intended to prepare for a confrontation, and which they believed failed to deter Iran in any way from whatever they believe Iran might do.

Rood added that the US has privately sent “blunt signals” to Iran threatening them with consequences. These are presumably separate from the very public US threats against Iran that happen nearly constantly.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.