Bolton Criticizes Iranian Strikes as 'Major Setback for Israeli-U.S. Deterrence'

Tensions escalate following recent aerial attacks in the Middle East

by Zain ul Abedin
Bolton Criticizes Iranian Strikes as 'Major Setback for Israeli-U.S. Deterrence'
© Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton has criticized the Iranian strikes over the weekend as a significant lapse in the deterrence strategies of both Israel and the United States. Speaking on CNN with Wolf Blitzer, Bolton highlighted the gravity of the situation despite the minimal physical damage reported.

"What we had tonight was a massive failure of Israeli and American deterrence. It's a 200 ballistic missile, cruise missile, drone failure," Bolton remarked. He continued to express relief over the preliminary reports suggesting minimal casualties: "Thank God if the death toll is low or nonexistent." The coordinated defense efforts by the U.S.

and Israel managed to intercept hundreds of Iranian drones and missiles overnight in a substantial aerial assault. The Israeli military confirmed that most of the missiles aimed at the country were successfully neutralized, mitigating potential damage.

Advocating Stronger Response

Amid these developments, Bolton advocated for a forceful Israeli response to reassert regional stability. "Israel’s response should not be proportionate. It should be far stronger," he advised, stressing the need to discourage Iran from considering similar maneuvers by ensuring the repercussions far outweigh any perceived gains.

As Israel's war cabinet convened on Sunday to deliberate potential retaliatory measures, concerns about escalating conflict remain prevalent. John Kirby, White House National Security Communications Adviser, shared insights on NBC's "Meet the Press," emphasizing President Biden's cautious approach.

Kirby reassured that the U.S. does not intend to escalate tensions into a broader conflict, underscoring Israel's robust support system. "Israel demonstrated again that they’re not standing alone, that they have friends," Kirby said, reinforcing the U.S.'

s stance against a larger war with Iran. The international community watches closely as the region stands on the precipice of further conflict. The actions taken in the coming days will be pivotal in determining the trajectory of Middle Eastern geopolitical dynamics, especially in how effectively deterrence can be reestablished to prevent future conflicts.