The Biden Administration is facing intense scrutiny over for its slow response in launching retaliatory strikes on Iranian-linked militia groups in the Middle East after three U.S. troops were killed in Jordan.
CBS News National Security Correspondent David Martin accused President Joe Biden of giving Iran-backed militants time to prepare and hide before striking the region.
Martin said that the U.S. military “was perplexed by the degree to which” the Biden Administration “telegraphed these strikes” in response to the devastating drone attack on U.S. soldiers, adding that the telegraphing “gave the militia leaders and Iranian operatives in Iraq and Syria time to either get out of the country or go to ground by surrounding themselves with women and children.”
However, Martin said that if the “militias intend to resume their strikes against American troops, sooner or later, they have to come out of hiding. And if tonight’s strikes were successful, when they come out of hiding, they won’t have much to work with.”
White House National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby defended the administration’s delayed response. He stressed on Friday that the U.S. is not “looking for a war with Iran,” and that they were waiting for the weather to cooperate before launching their attack.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) said that the attacks on U.S. troops “demanded a clear and forceful response”— the opposite of what Biden did.
Instead, he waited days to respond to the fatal strikes.
“Unfortunately, the administration waited for a week and telegraphed to the world, including to Iran, the nature of our response,” Johnson said in a statement.
He said that the Biden Administration’s “handwringing and excessive signaling undercuts” the nation’s ability to put a “decisive end to the barrage of attacks endured over the past few months,”
Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) echoed similar criticisms, speculating that the president’s slow response in striking back allowed them time to relocate and hide.