Since resigning, former U.S. Marine Corps general and Secretary of Defense James “Mad Dog” Mattis has largely stayed out of the spotlight. In a rare public appearance, his first since leaving office in December, Mattis urged that:
“The United States should buy time to keep peace and stability and allow diplomats to work diplomacy on how to keep peace for one more hour, one more day, one more week, a month or a year.”
While President Donald Trump has expressed support for diplomacy and peace, it’s reported that the Pentagon is drawing up plans to deploy as many as 120,000 troops in the region. Reportedly, National Security Adviser John Bolton is pushing heavily for a confrontation.
Mattis hasn’t been the only one in recent hours to make a rare public appearance. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei criticized Iran’s president and foreign minister by name. Khamenei rarely rebukes Iran’s elected officials in public but has the final say in all government matters.
Interestingly enough, Khamenei has some common ground with Trump: both believe that the nuclear accords signed between the two countries ended up being a mistake. Of course, the two leaders disagree for different reasons. Trump believes that the deal should have never been signed. Khamenei believes the accords deal was implemented wrongly.
It’s unclear what Khamenei means, but hawks within Iran have long claimed that they gave up too much in exchange for too few economic gains. Khamenei also argued that Iran’s youth will see the fall of both the State of Israel and “American civilization.”