Pentagon deploys more than 3K additional troops to Middle East

Pentagon deploys more than 3K additional troops to Middle East
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More than 3,000 American troops will be sent to the Middle East following the U.S. strike that killed top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Iraq, the Pentagon said Friday.

The troops will that will be deployed are from the Immediate Response Force of the 82nd Airborne Division, a Defense Department official told The Hill.

Iran has vowed "harsh revenge" for the killing of Soleimani. The Quds Force leader died Thursday in an airstrike at Baghdad International Airport alongside Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of the Iranian-backed Iraqi militia Popular Mobilization Forces.

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Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoSunday shows preview: Lawmakers gear up for Senate impeachment trial Parnas pressure grows on Senate GOP Dems plan marathon prep for Senate trial, wary of Trump trying to 'game' the process MORE has said the action, which was ordered by President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump's newest Russia adviser, Andrew Peek, leaves post: report Hawley expects McConnell's final impeachment resolution to give White House defense ability to motion to dismiss Trump rips New York City sea wall: 'Costly, foolish' and 'environmentally unfriendly idea' MORE, was in response to "imminent threats" to American lives.

Trump tweeted that Soleimani "should have been taken out many years ago!"

Thursday's airstrike marks a major escalation in tensions between Washington and Tehran after a militia backed by Iran and its supporters stormed the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Tuesday. That assault prompted Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperOvernight Defense: Book says Trump called military leaders 'dopes and babies' | House reinvites Pompeo for Iran hearing | Dems urge Esper to reject border wall funding request Senate Dems urge Esper to oppose shifting Pentagon money to border wall Overnight Defense: GAO finds administration broke law by withholding Ukraine aid | Senate opens Trump trial | Pentagon to resume training Saudi students soon MORE to announce the immediate deployment of 750 U.S. troops to the region.

Updated at 3:08 p.m.