President Trump. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump tweeted Sunday if Iran wants a fight, it'd be the "official end" of the country, hours before Fox News broadcast an interview in which he said he wouldn't let Tehran have nuclear weapons.

Details: Trump tweeted after a rocket exploded near the U.S. Embassy in Iraq, "Never threaten the United States again!" No one's claimed responsibility for the attack. In an interview on Fox News' "The Next Revolution with Steve Hilton" recorded last week, Trump said he didn't want a fight. "But you do have situations like Iran, you can’t let them have nuclear weapons," he said.

The big picture: In his wide-ranging interview with Hilton, Trump stood by his decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and impose sanctions on the country, saying he had no idea the effects would be as strong as they were. "The country is devastated from the standpoint of the economy," he said.

Driving the news: Although no one had claimed responsibility for the Baghdad rocket attack, in which there were no casualties, a U.S. State Department official told Reuters: "We will hold Iran responsible if any such attacks are conducted by its proxy militia forces or elements of such forces, and will respond to Iran accordingly."

What they're saying: U.S. ally Saudi Arabia said Saturday it was not looking for a war, but it was ready for one, after it accused Iran of ordering the attacks of 2 oil pumping stations in the kingdom, for which Yemen's Houthi group claimed responsibility.

The other side: BBC quoted Maj. Gen. Hossein Salami, the commander of Iran's elite Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, as saying Iran was not seeking a conflict. He also said "Washington is not brave enough to launch a war," according to the Iranian Fars news agency.

Go deeper: Trump pushes China and Iran to the brink

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Updated 26 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 8 p.m. ET: 33,495,373 — Total deaths: 1,004,314 — Total recoveries: 23,259,632Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 8 p.m ET: 7,186,527 — Total deaths: 205,895 — Total recoveries: 2,809,674 — Total tests: 103,155,189Map.
  3. Health: Americans won't take Trump's word on the vaccine, Axios-Ipsos poll finds.
  4. States: NYC's coronavirus positivity rate spikes to highest since June.
  5. Sports: Tennessee Titans close facility amid NFL's first coronavirus outbreak.
  6. World: U.K. beats previous record for new coronavirus cases.
  7. Work: United States of burnout — Asian American unemployment spikes amid pandemic

Misinformation thrives on social media ahead of presidential debate

Joe Biden speaking in Wilmington, Delaware, on Sept. 27. Photo: Roberto Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images

A baseless conspiracy theory that Joe Biden would wear an electronic device in his ear during the first presidential debate on Tuesday went viral on social media hours before the event.

Why it matters: The conspiracy originated on social media before appearing in a text message sent by President Trump’s re-election campaign to supporters. It was then regurgitated by media outlets like Fox News and New York Post, who cited the Trump campaign, throughout the day, according to NBC News.

Amy Coney Barrett says Trump offered her nomination 3 days after Ginsburg's death

Barrett speaks after being nominated to the US Supreme Court by President Trump in the Rose Garden of the White House. Photo:; Olivier Douliery/AFP

Amy Coney Barrett said in a questionnaire released by the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday that President Trump offered her the Supreme Court nomination on Sept. 21, five days before he announced the pick to the public.

Why it matters: According to the questionnaire, Trump offered Barrett the nomination just three days after Ruth Bader Ginsburg died, suggesting that the president knew early on that Barrett was his pick. Minutes after offering Barrett the nomination, however, Trump told reporters that he had not made up his mind and that five women were on the shortlist.