Hannity promises Trump would 'bomb the hell out of' Iran following downing of US drone

Fox News host Sean HannitySean Patrick HannityHannity: 'Lunatic' Schiff 'the worst liar in all of politics' Hypocrisy is the currency of the realm for GOP in the age of Trump GOP threatens to weaponize impeachment witnesses amid standoff MORE opened his show Thursday with a vow that President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff pleads to Senate GOP: 'Right matters. And the truth matters.' Anita Hill to Iowa crowd: 'Statute of limitations' for Biden apology is 'up' Sen. Van Hollen releases documents from GAO investigation MORE would soon declare war on Iran unless Iran's leader take a "small opportunity" for peace.

Hannity said Thursday night that if the "Mullahs are smart enough" they will take a quickly disappearing option to negotiate peace with the U.S. following the downing of a U.S. surveillance drone overnight Wednesday.

If not, Hannity said, Trump would proceed to "bomb the hell out of" the country.

A Media Matters reporter who first posted the clip online noted that Hannity's warning to Iran came just minutes after his lead-in, Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonMegyn Kelly to appear on Bill Maher's 'Real Time' on Friday Tucker Carlson: Bernie Sanders capable of taking 'many thousands' of Trump voters CNN draws 7.3 million viewers for Iowa Democratic debate MORE, praised the president for avoiding calls for war with Iran.

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Trump's love for Fox News programming is well-known, and it was reported by The Daily Beast on Wednesday that Carlson has been personally advising Trump on the subject and urging him to resist voices in favor of war from within his administration. Carlson has also publicly criticized Trump's national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonSenate Republicans confident they'll win fight on witnesses Hakeem Jeffries tells Senate in impeachment proceedings they should subpoena Baseball Hall of Fame after Jeter vote Susan Collins asked Justice Roberts to intervene after Nadler late-night 'cover-up' accusation MORE, who is seen as a hawk on the issue of Iran.

Tensions escalated overnight between the Trump administration and Iran after Iran claimed to have shot down a surveillance drone flying over its southern Hormozgan Province. U.S. Central Command confirmed the drone's destruction in a statement Thursday, but denied that the drone was over Iranian territory, countering that it was over international waters.