America's gunboat diplomacy may overreach, risk war, experts warn

The guided-missile destroyer Bainbridge follows the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln into the Strait of Gibraltar, on April 13, 2019. The USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group is being deployed to the Middle East to send a clear warning to Iran.
The guided-missile destroyer Bainbridge follows the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln into the Strait of Gibraltar, on April 13, 2019. The USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group is being deployed to the Middle East to send a clear warning to Iran.PHOTO: NYTIMES

WASHINGTON - The United States' deployment of a second aircraft carrier strike group to the Middle East, citing threats from Iran, has alarmed policy circles in Washington who fear that an increasingly toe to toe confrontation with Iran could well lead to a miscalculation.

Larger questions loom, however, over the Donald Trump administration's particular brand of "peace through strength" - or what some analysts are calling "coercive" diplomacy - and its inherent risks.

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