President Donald Trump said Friday that America does not seek “regime change” in Iran, less than a day after the U.S. launched an airstrike that killed the country’s top general, Qasem Soleimani.
But the U.S. is “ready and prepared to take whatever action is necessary” if Iran threatens American lives, Trump added. “We took action last night to stop a war,” Trump said in his first television address since Soleimani’s death was announced Thursday night. “We did not take action to start a war.”
Soleimani “made the death of innocent people his sick passion,” Trump said from his Palm Beach resort, Mar-a-Lago. “We caught him in the act and terminated him.”
Trump: We committed an act of war to stop a war.
Pompeo: Americans are safer now, but evacuate Iraq immediately, you’re not safe.
Pompeo: We’re de-escalating.
Esper: We’re sending more troops.
— Mieke Eoyang (@MiekeEoyang) January 3, 2020
Trump, reading a statement in Mar-a-Lago, claims assassinating Soleimani was “to stop a war.”
“We took action last night to stop a war. We do not take action to start a war.” pic.twitter.com/jkqmz0gQhq
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 3, 2020