FRIENDLY FIRE

CENTCOM Slaps Down Top U.K. General Who Said Iran Threat Had Not Increased

As the Trump administration reportedly draws up plans to send as many as 120,000 troops to the Middle East to prepare for an “increased threat” from Iran, a top-ranking British general told reporters Tuesday that he has no idea what the White House is talking about—and flat-out refuted U.S. claims there’s an increased Iranian threat. “No, there’s been no increased threat from Iranian-backed forces in Iraq and Syria,” said Maj. Gen. Christopher Ghika, deputy commander of the coalition fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria. “If the threat level seems to go up, then we’ll raise our force protection measures accordingly.” The comments provoked an extraordinary rebuke from U.S. Central Command, which put out a statement saying Ghika’s comments “run counter to the identified credible threats available to intelligence from U.S. and allies regarding Iranian-backed forces in the region.” The statement went on to say that U.S. troops were “at a high level of alert as we continue to closely monitor credible and possibly imminent threats to U.S. forces in Iraq.”