Pentagon officials said Thursday that Iran may be planning further attacks on U.S. interests in the Middle East but will be met with a “buzzsaw” if it does.
“The game has changed,” he said, according to the Associated Press. “We’re prepared to do what is necessary to defend our personnel and our interests and our partners in the region.”
Esper’s remarks come just days after violent protestors and militia members swarmed the U.S. embassy in Baghdad to demand an end to U.S. airstrikes the region. President Donald Trump blamed the violence on an Iranian-backed militia active in Iraq named Kataib Hezbollah.
After fending off the protestors with air support and Iraqi special forces, Pentagon officials sent additional marines to the embassy to beef up security, along with several hundred Army paratroopers from Fort Bragg, N.C.
Without elaborating, Esper said Thursday that U.S. officials have “indications” that Iran may be planning further provocations in the region.
Any attempts to storm the embassy again will be met with what Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said a “buzzsaw” of a military response.