Senator Tom Cotton is an old-school hawk.
The Arkansas Republican is lobbying President Trump to launch a retaliatory strike on Iran.
And he’s got the president’s ear. (Politico)
The Arkansas Republican has spoken to several high-ranking U.S. officials and the president himself about the rising tensions with Iran after the U.S. blamed the Islamic Republic for attacking two oil tankers. He declined to describe those conversations beyond saying that he and Trump “discussed the threat that Iran poses to the United States and its partners.”
But in an interview in his Capitol office on Tuesday, he offered a hard-line case for the president to take action now and not wait, as some of his GOP colleagues are advocating.
“There are more than ample targets that can deter Iran from this kind of malicious behavior whether it’s naval bases or munition storage or refining capabilities,” Cotton said.
His goal? “To inflict enough pain on Tehran that they realize that we’re not going to tolerate these kind of attacks on the high seas.”
While sanctions have driven Iran to the edge of an economic breakdown, the cost of bombing Iran would be high even compared to 1991’s Gulf War air campaign.
Iran has the most advanced anti-aircraft network U.S. aircraft have faced post-World War II. While the outcome wouldn’t be in doubt, loses could be substantial.