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Europeans, Senators Fear Iran War
CAIRO — The Bush administration's ascending hostile rhetoric toward Iran is sending shockwaves across European policy-makers and American Senators over another military adventure, this time against a mightier foe.
"The clock is ticking," one European official told the Guardian on Wednesday, January 31.
"Military action has come back on to the table more seriously than before. The language in the US has changed."
Bush ordered on Tuesday a second aircraft carrier strike group to the Gulf region, raising the US naval presence in the region to its highest level since the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
The Pentagon also froze the sales of all spare parts for F-14 fighter aircraft over concerns the spare parts could be transferred to Iran, which bought F-14s from the US before the 1979 Iranian revolution.
The Bush administration has stepped up its rhetoric against Iran over what Washington describes as Tehran's role in destabilizing the region.
Bush has vowed to "seek out and destroy" any networks funneling weapons or fighters from Tehran or neighboring Syria into Iraq.
The wartime president recently admitted authorizing a "kill or capture" policy of Iranian agents in Iraq in an effort to weaken Iran's growing influence.
A US official said the administration will shortly publish a dossier confirming Iran's destabilizing role in Iraq and support for Shiite death squads.
Washington also accuses Tehran of covertly developing a nuclear program to produce an atomic bomb, which is categorically denied by the Iranians.
European diplomats highlighted a widening rift between the US and European allies over how to deal with Iran.