The optics of Trump’s announcement: America stands ready to strike

President flanked by cabinet members and backed by eight military officers sent a clear message

As concern swelled about a potential military confrontation with Iran, Donald Trump appeared at the White House on Wednesday to deliver a notably non-provocative message, emphasizing that no Americans had been killed in Iranian missile strikes the night before.

But the choreography of the announcement, with Trump flanked by cabinet members and backed by eight military officers, communicated a clear subtext: America stood ready to strike.

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