After lawmakers were finally briefed about the White House ordered assassination of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in Baghdad on Jan. 2nd, many walked away from the meeting saying the evidence provided for the so-called “imminent threat” Soleimani posed against America (namely their embassy in Baghdad) was pathetic at best.
Virginia Congressperson Gerry Connolly, for instance, said, “I believe this administration is after the fact trying to piece together a rationale for its action that was impulsive, reckless and put this country’s security at risk.”
[Secretary of State Mike] Pompeo later defended the briefing, saying they informed lawmakers with about as much detail as they could.–NY Times.
It doesn’t help the White House’s cause that today reports are coming out that Soleimani was just one assassination planned that day.
The US also attempted to murder another Iranian leader in Yemen but failed, suggesting Soleimani was just one part of a broader operation, raising more doubts of the already dubiously viewed “imminent threat” excuse put forth.
According to the [Washington] Post, the Iranian target was Abdul Reza Shahlai, a financier and key commander of Iran’s Quds Force [in Yemen] which is an elite wing of the Iranian military operating throughout the Middle East.–CNN.
Shahlai is a “key commander” of the Iranian Quds Forces currently fighting in Yemen; a situation deemed “the worse humanitarian crisis in the world.”
Adding up the targets that day, we have Soleimani, who was a target of Israel for many years, and Shahlai, a Shia target of Saudi Arabia — the Sunni kingdom currently doing their best to exterminate the Shia population in Yemen.
A report from the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project last June found that more than 91,000 people have been killed in the conflict since 2015. It also found that the Saudi-led coalition and its allies had been responsible for more than 8,000 of the approximately 11,700 deaths connected to the direct targeting of civilians in the conflict.–CNN.
Donald Trump has made no attempt to hide through his words or actions that his foreign policy is based on the orders of Israel — where coins have been made depicting him as the second coming of the biblical figure King Cyrus, who was instrumental in the building of Israel’s kingdom — and Saudi Arabia, who Trump openly tweeted he would take military orders from following an attack on a Saudi oil refinery in September.
The targeting of these two Iranian military commanders in one operation only adds credence to the theory that the White House wasn’t neutralizing any threats against America or Americans, but was instead trying to provoke Iran into all out war on behalf of Iran’s enemies.
After all, Israel, who just unleashed dozens of air strikes on Iranian-backed militias along the Iraq-Syria border a couple days ago, has been pushing for war with Iran for years, and has been meeting with Arab nations since February to achieve that very end.
To those who have been following the Middle Eastern situation with any degree of objectivity, the more information the White House holds back about their assassination operation, the more confirmation it gives to it being for the benefit of foreign nations.
In the end, coalition forces fighting Sunni terrorist militias in the region have halted their operations due to these heightened Iranian tensions, giving those terrorist networks a chance to regain composure and strength, while at the same time, the killing of Soleimani, ISIS’s number one enemy, only adds to their progress, while putting American and coalition troops in more danger in the long run.
On that token, by killing Soleimani, the entire Shia world will now be furious at America and their allies in the region. Couple this with the fact that Iran has ordered the US out of the Middle East while Iraq’s parliament has voted for US troops to leave their country. Donald Trump has said no to both. It would take a true idiot to not realize that this will only further the danger to the troops that remain and others that are deployed.
In the end, Trump, at the direction of those in his ear, has created a situation in the Middle East that is possibly more volatile and dangerous towards America, American troops and their allies than ever before. I guess there’s a reason the international community condemned the operation.
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