Air Force via Associated Press

Trump: Cocked & Loaded for Strike

Pulled Back Over Concerns of Multiple Deaths

June 21, 2019 - 10:13 am

By LOLITA C. BALDOR and DEB RIECHMANN Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Friday the U.S. was "cocked and loaded' to retaliate against Iran for downing an American drone, but he canceled the missile strikes 10 minutes before they were to be executed after being told some 150 people could die.

Trump tweeted Friday that the U.S. will never allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon, a major longtime demand by the U.S. and its allies. But he said he's in no hurry to respond militarily to this week's downing of the huge U.S. surveillance drone over the Strait of Hormuz. His statement was the latest indication that he does not want to escalate the clash with Tehran, but he didn't rule out a future U.S. strike.

He said U.S. economic sanctions are crippling the Iranian economy and more are being added.

Iran claimed Friday it had issued several warnings before shooting down the drone over what it said was Iranian territory.

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