U.S. President Donald Trump has confirmed that he initially ordered, but then called off a military strike against Iran following the drone shoot down incident.
Trump in a Twitter statement said that he called off the strike, just ten minutes before it was supposed to take place, because a General informed him that around 150 people will die. He added that the causalities are not proportionate to the shooting down of a drone.
….proportionate to shooting down an unmanned drone. I am in no hurry, our Military is rebuilt, new, and ready to go, by far the best in the world. Sanctions are biting & more added last night. Iran can NEVER have Nuclear Weapons, not against the USA, and not against the WORLD!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 21, 2019
The attack against Iran was recommended by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; National Security Advisor John R. Bolton; and CIA Director Gina Haspel while top Pentagon officials cautioned that such an action could result in a spiraling escalation with risks for American forces in the region, the New York Times reported citing senior Trump administration officials.
A U.S. Navy RQ-4N Global Hawk BAMS-D high-altitude surveillance drone was shot down by an Iranian surface-to-air missile system at approximately 11:35 p.m. GMT on June 19. Iran said the drone was operating in its airspace while the US said it was in international airspace over the Strait of Hormuz.
The U.S. has dispatched naval assets to the debris field of the downed drone as the technologies onboard the drone is very sensitive and the US doesn’t want the debris to reach in the hands of its rivals including Iran, China and Russia.
Iranian state TV has aired footage showing parts of the drone allegedly recovered from its territorial waters as a proof that its was shot down after violating its airspace.