"Fox News Sunday" anchor Chris Wallace reacted on air Friday to a New York Times report that President Trump almost ordered air strikes on Iran Thursday night but changed his mind at the last minute because of the projected loss of life. Trump told NBC's Chuck Todd in an interview that will air in full on Sunday's "Meet the Press" that the possibility of 150 casualties was "not proportionate" to Iran shooting down an unmanned drone.
"A war with Iran would be a very ugly and prolonged conflict... So it does raise the question: Does the president have the stomach to launch this kind of attack and get more deeply involved, perhaps, in a confrontation with Iran?" Wallace mused.
"Any discussion of what collateral damage in terms of the deaths on the ground would be is discussed at that point before the president gives a new order as to what various targets he wants to hit," Wallace added. "The idea that 10 minutes before the strike has the president says how many people are going to be killed if we go ahead with those strikes, that usually is discussed in depth a great deal for that."
"Donald Trump as a candidate - and even as the president - said that there was a real cost of that in terms of the U.S. Threatening to do something and not going ahead and doing it so there’s a cost to action and also a cost to inaction," he said.
"What the president is going to do now, who knows," Wallace concluded. "There is certainly a possibility that he will go ahead and order another strike when he’s assured that there will not be as many casualties on the ground but on the other hand, it sure does seem like he doesn’t have much of an appetite for a strike."