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Israeli military instructed to prepare for Trump strike on Iran: report

Israel's military is preparing for the possibility that the Trump administration will launch a military strike against Iran, Axios reported on Wednesday.

Senior Israeli officials told the outlet that the Israeli government instructed military commanders to prepare for a potential strike during the “very sensitive period” between now and when President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden to meet with 6 GOP senators next week Arizona secretary of state gets security detail over death threats surrounding election audit On The Money: Five takeaways on a surprisingly poor jobs report | GOP targets jobless aid after lackluster April gain MORE takes office on Jan. 20.

Israel is reportedly making preparations with the expectation that they would receive advance notice from the U.S. regarding any military action, but with concerns that such notification might come too close to the attack.

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Israel is also preparing for the possibility of a retaliatory strike by Iran, either directly or through proxies in nearby countries.

The New York Times reported last week that President TrumpDonald TrumpDemocrats, activists blast reported Trump DOJ effort to get journalists' phone records Arizona secretary of state gets security detail over death threats surrounding election audit Trump admin got phone records of WaPo reporters covering Russia probe: report MORE was considering a military strike against Iran in an attempt to stop Tehran's growing nuclear program. The International Atomic Energy Agency a day earlier had reported that the country’s uranium stockpile was 12-times larger than allowed under the Obama-era nuclear deal that the Trump administration withdrew from in 2018.

Trump reportedly held a meeting Thursday in the Oval Office to discuss his options, but Vice President Pence, Secretary of State Mike PompeoMike PompeoPompeo on CIA recruitment: We can't risk national security to appease 'liberal, woke agenda' DNC gathers opposition research on over 20 potential GOP presidential candidates Dozens of scientists call for deeper investigation into origins of COVID-19, including the lab theory MORE, acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller and Gen. Mark MilleyMark MilleyOvernight Defense: Former Navy secretary reportedly spent .4M on travel | Ex-Pentagon chief Miller to testify on Jan. 6 Capitol attack | Austin to deliver West Point commencement speech Trump's Navy secretary spent over M on travel during pandemic: report Overnight Defense: US may keep training Afghan forces in other countries | Defense chief tight-lipped on sexual assault decision | 'Swift' return to Iran deal possible, US says MORE, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, dissuaded him against such actions.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz has spoken twice over the past two weeks with Miller to discuss Iran, Syria and defense cooperation.

On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuBenjamin (Bibi) NetanyahuMORE met in Saudi Arabia with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The main topic of conversation was Iran, Israeli officials told Axios.

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State Department officials, meanwhile, told reporters that “all options are on the table” regarding Iran.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran have been high since January, when Trump ordered a drone strike in Baghdad that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force.

U.S. Central Command head Gen. Frank McKenzie said last week that destabilizing actions by Iran have continued and “increased in scope and severity” since 2019.