Soleimani’s assassination: nothing will be as before – Jan. 05, 2020

Around 8 in the evening of January 2, a private plane, coming from Beirut, took off from Damascus Airport and landed at Baghdad International Airport around midnight. The plane carried General Qassem Soleimani, commander of Falilaq al-Quds, the most important Iranian officer and Khamenei’s closest associate.

Soleimani was also accompanied by four officers of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, most notably General Hussein Jafari. Despite warnings of danger due to the atmosphere in Iraq following US attacks on five military installations of the Kata’ib Hezbollah militia in Iraq, which al-Ḥashd ash-Shaʿbī militia members used to try to infiltrate the US embassy, ​​Soleimani insisted on personally coordinating its movements.

At Baghdad airport, he was received by al-Ḥashd ash-Shaʿbī’s deputy and his personal friend Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis along with members of his guard. About 11 at night, al-Ḥashd ash-Shaʿbī militia trying to divert the attention of US forces in Baghdad from the convoy that passed the VIP exit of the airport, which Soleimani was aboard, fired three small Katyusha rockets into the airport. But the Americans were watching closely, and as soon as the convoy was outside the airport, an American drone from Bahrain targeted it with rockets, destroying three cars and killing all passengers.

General Suleimani was not just a military field leader. He was the long arm of the Iranian regime throughout the Middle East and a charismatic leader with a great deal of influence. He was directly responsible for equipping the Lebanese Hezbollah militia and its support with advanced missile systems. He led the July 2006 war between Hezbollah and Israel through a small room in a tunnel in the southern suburbs of Beirut. In Syria, he co-ordinated Iranian support for the Assad regime to end the Syrian revolution and prevent the fall of Assad. Sοleymanι himself also co-ordinated the battles of Aleppo and the region around Damascus and Daraa.

As for Iraq, Sοleymanι is behind the creation of al-Ḥashd ash-Shaʿbī and Kata’ib Hezbollah militias and many more terrorist militias such as Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq and al-Nujaba. Suleimani was behind the creation and support of the Houthi militia in Yemen and had direct contact with the Taliban in Afghanistan. He is behind the attack on Aramco’s facilities in Saudi Arabia a few months ago, as well as many terrorist attacks that killed hundreds of thousands of people in the Middle East.

The assassination of General Soleimani is a powerful blow to the Iranian regime and its expansion plan to the Middle East, which makes the whole region be on pins and needles pending Iran’s response.

We are open to options from a surgical strike by an Iranian instrument against US forces or Israel, to a few days conflict between al-Ḥashd ash-Shaʿbī militia and Americans on Iraqi soil, to a direct war between Iran and the US.

All of these options lie at the table of Khamenei, who alone will determine the manner and size of Iran’s response to the killing of the most important Iranian man in the Middle East in the last twenty years. In this way, the battle of biting fingers – in Arabic words – is over. We got into a dark tunnel that we don’t know what’s inside.