WSJ: Biden, US officials watched with ‘mounting alarm’ as scale of Iran attack became clear

People gather around a component from an intercepted ballistic missile fired by Iran on April 14, 2024 that fell near the Dead Sea, April 20, 2024 (AP Photo/Itamar Grinberg)
People gather around a component from an intercepted ballistic missile fired by Iran on April 14, 2024 that fell near the Dead Sea, April 20, 2024 (AP Photo/Itamar Grinberg)

The Wall Street Journal reports that US President Joe Biden and security officials watched with “mounting alarm” as the scale of Iran’s ballistic missile attack on Israel became clear last weekend.

“This was on the high end, I think, of what we were, what we were anticipating,” a senior official says of the moments the size of the Iranian barrage became clear.

An unnamed official tells the newspaper that it was “unclear until all was said and done” whether Israel’s missile defenses and the coalition of countries involved in shooting down projectiles, had succeeded.

The report says the US was confident that their plan could handle around 50 ballistic missiles, but was deeply concerned when it became clear that over 100 had been fired.

The outlet says that as it became clear in the run-up to the attack by Iran that something was going to happen, a team of US military personnel was secretly sent to Tel Aviv to work at “a missile defense operations center.”

The newspaper also says that plans were drawn up for Saudi and Jordanian planes to defend their airspace if necessary.

Iran launched more than 300 projectiles at Israel, comprising 170 drones, 30 cruise missiles and 120 ballistic missiles.

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