News & Politics

The Morning Briefing: Trump Pulls Back from Iran Strike, Media & Democrats Confused

President Donald Trump turns back to the audience after speaking during an event in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, Friday, Feb. 15, 2019, to declare a national emergency in order to build a wall along the southern border. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Good Friday morning.

Here is what’s on the president’s agenda today:

  • The president receives his intelligence briefing
  • President Trump has lunch with the secretary of State
  • The president and first lady receive a 2019 hurricane briefing
  • The president and first lady participate in the congressional picnic

New York Times: Trump was ready to strike but then pulled back

Corporate media’s flagship scandal sheet The New York Times is reporting that President Trump was ready to strike Iran but suddenly pulled back. We all know how reliable the Times and their “sources” are, so take it with a  grain of salt.

President Trump approved military strikes against Iran in retaliation for downing an American surveillance drone, but pulled back from launching them on Thursday night after a day of escalating tensions.

As late as 7 p.m., military and diplomatic officials were expecting a strike, after intense discussions and debate at the White House among the president’s top national security officials and congressional leaders, according to multiple senior administration officials involved in or briefed on the deliberations.

The Times also said the WH did not ask the “news” paper to hold the story. I suspect the administration wants it out there that Trump had his finger on the boom-boom button but changed his mind. The president campaigned against the neocon, bloodlusty, nation-building tours we’ve come to expect from the GOP elites. He is not looking for a war and he made that clear on Thursday. Not so much for his advisors. “Mr. Trump’s national security advisers split about whether to respond militarily. Senior administration officials said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; John R. Bolton, the national security adviser; and Gina Haspel, the C.I.A. director, had favored a military response. But top Pentagon officials cautioned that such an action could result in a spiraling escalation with risks for American forces in the region.”

Reuters is reporting that Trump sent a warning to Iran via Oman. “In his message, Trump said he was against any war with Iran and wanted to talk to Tehran about various issues…He gave a short period of time to get our response but Iran’s immediate response was that it is up to Supreme Leader (Ayatollah Ali) Khamenei to decide about this issue,” one of the officials told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity.

A second Iranian official said: “We made it clear that the leader is against any talks, but the message will be conveyed to him to make a decision…However, we told the Omani official that any attack against Iran will have regional and international consequences.”

The Democrats are confused. They wanted so badly to burp up their pre-fab, anti-war talking points, but Trump isn’t making war. What to do, what to do? Politico has it covered with a piece that was probably pre-written after news broke that Iran shot down our drone: ‘Step back from the brink of war’: Democrats slam Trump on report he ordered Iran strikes. The Democrats needed some opportunity to seem relevant and Politico delivered. But why would anyone care about foreign policy strategy from the party who secretly gave the Iranian terror regime billions of dollars and pulled back sanctions to sign a nuclear “deal” with no oversight?

Let’s be honest, there are plenty of things the U.S. can do that don’t involve invasion and bombs: bank accounts can be emptied, people can disappear. It can be very dangerous to be an Iranian agent walking freely around Latin America and Africa. Things happen. “No comment.”

Related:

So much dumb. Ocasio-Cortez tells White House to ‘put down its saber,’ and negotiate with Iran

FAA prohibits ‘all US carriers’ from flying over Iran as tensions rise

Hope Hicks closed-door testimony

I haven’t had a chance to read her testimony before the House Judiciary Committee yet but the Democrats are upset that Hicks was prevented from answering many of their questions on account of the president exercising executive privilege. Nadler’s booster seat is sure getting a workout.

Related:

Read: Transcript of Hope Hicks testimony to the Judiciary Committee

Hope Hicks refused to answer 155 questions during House testimony

Hicks tells lawmakers: ‘I lived the Mueller report’

Jerry Nadler Has To Be Told To Stop Calling Hope Hicks ‘Ms. Lewandowski’

Creepy Uncle Joe round up

Pelosi goes to bat for Biden on “civility” towards segregationists: Hey, he’s authentic

Sanders clashes with MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle over Biden comments

Biden huddles with CBC leaders amid ‘segregationist’ controversy

Black lawmakers defend Biden after his comments on working with segregationists

Media Knives Come Out: ABC Hits Joe Biden and Son’s Suspect Dealings in Ukraine and China

Your daily WTF:

Engineers built a robot fish that powers itself with ‘fake blood’

Other morsels:

‘Hail Satan’ opening prayer at Alaska government meeting prompts walkouts, protest

Arkansas Woman Says Hunter Biden is the Father of Her Infant Child

Rubio Slams WaPo Report Claiming Trump Losing Interest in Venezuela

Bernie on why Warren is gaining on him: Let’s face it, some people want to nominate a woman

Trump to issue executive order seeking transparency on healthcare costs: Wall Street Journal

U.S. appeals court lets Trump abortion referral ‘gag rule’ go into effect

Oregon House unanimously passes bill strengthening hate crime protections

Here Are The New York Clerks Refusing To Issue Driver’s Licenses To Illegal Aliens

More Than 100,000 Illegal Migrants Have Escaped Border Patrol Agents in 2019, Provost Says

Horrible. Roy Moore will run for Senate again

NRA suspends top lobbyist Chris Cox after ‘failed coup attempt’

US: Gang leaders ran killings, drugs from California prison

Judge temporarily blocks ICE from making arrests in Mass. courthouses

Before he was killed, Dallas gunman discussed suicide and was institutionalized, parents tell paper

Cannabis sales could hit $15 billion globally this year

Longer than usual and M-shaped: CDC says 2018-19 flu season was odd but not as severe as the previous deadly season

Researchers confirm 1,600 secret graves in Mexico since 2006

And that’s all I’ve got, now go beat back the angry mob!