Blowback From The Lt. Gen. Soleimani Assassination. Iran Eying Revenge Assassinations Of U.S. Leadership. by J.


 A week after a Politico report claiming that Iran was possibly targeting the U.S. Ambassador to South Africa as a revenge assassination target… the Commander (CC) of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is now saying that a targeting assassination of U.S. Leadership personnel is no longer an afterthought but in active planning stages, and will be carried out.

IRGC Commander Major General Hossein Salami said on Sunday that the revenge for the assassination of Lt. Gen. Soleimani is ‘definite’ and that the force will target those behind the assassination.  The targets they're looking at include anyone who had a hand in the assassination of Soleimani.  Four prominent persons pictured in the Iranian Press article are the U.S. President, Secretary of State Pompeo, DCI Gina Haspel, OSD Mark Esper.  Those are not the only ones that the IRGC is looking at.  Their targeting goes all the way down the military chain of command to include those who pulled the trigger.  The different 'layers' that the IRGC is targeting include US military, intelligence, and political officials of the U.S. in the region who are currently residing in countries near Iran or are regularly commuting between U.S. and the region and who have had a direct or indirect role in assassinating General Soleimani.  Another layer includes field commanders and other officers behind the assassination of General Soleimani.

All these will be on the IRGC's target lists from now on, and will require protection details for the remainder of their lives. 

Iran is playing a dangerous game not just threatening assassinations, but bragging that they will be carried out.


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46 Responses to Blowback From The Lt. Gen. Soleimani Assassination. Iran Eying Revenge Assassinations Of U.S. Leadership. by J.

  1. eakens says:

    Never forgive, never forget. Where have I heard that before.

  2. Gordon reed says:

    Yes Iran is playing a dangerous game but the US started the dangerous game

  3. DougDiggler says:

    Can’t say I would shed a single tear for any of the “targeted individuals” but as usual, this seems like a complete farrago. Iran has already explained the route they will take in seeking revenge: expelling the US military out of the region, not piecemeal assassination of utterly replaceable individual criminals

  4. walrus says:

    Perhaps assassinating Soleimani wasn’t a good idea. The Golden Rule is a pain sometimes.

  5. Fasteddiez says:

    There are some possibilities that I see, perhaps many more: One, Iran’s leadership is selling Wolf Tickets, with the adjunct of keeping the American leadership guessing;
    Two, they’re going to do it, how soon?
    Three, the target list proffered possibly covers hundreds of targets, and as J said all of the above will need added protection, which means a lot of job openings for professionels who do that sort of thing, which includes SIGINT, CI, etc. etc.;
    Four The Iranians will get somone else to do the job, could be hazardous for the country selected, but which is the country or group that will have their false flag hoisted? It could be ISIS or the Al Nusra Front, which are financed by the Saudis and Qataris, whose onduct is approved by whom exactly? Split retributions, round up the usual Middle Eastern Christians, Hazaris,etc, put them in a bulding, paint ISIS on the roof etc.;
    Five, what is it they say about certain dishes best served cold? I’m sure I am missing many possibilities, and I welcome rebuttals or additions. What does the Prez and his top generals advise on a solution? Bomb Bomb Bomb Iran comes to mind
    sink their Navy blow up their Air force? The US knows what the retaliation will consist of, so I need not mention it. I’m thinking just now that the UAE and the Izzies just now agreed to militarize an island in the Persian Gulf, with the werewithal
    to prevent Iran from closing the Straits of Hormuz. Maybe they want to stir things up before the election, as in getting the Trumpskin and Herr Bidendrool about throwing that military camo’ed up spanner in the works.
    I don’t think it matters anyways since the voting public
    cares about domestic issues, now this year, now than ever.

  6. turcopolier says:

    IMO it was a terrible idea.

  7. Eric Newhill says:

    So some Islamic fundies are threatening to kill the Great Satan and/or its agents. This is new(s)?
    IMO, The Iranians will continue to take their beatings like dogs. They are also barking like junkyard dogs on a chain behind a tall fence. Bark away if it makes you feel better.

  8. Bobo says:

    They seem to be putting the Iranian #1 and entourage in play, which is a very bad idea.

  9. JohninMK says:

    Fasteddiez, I think that the island you are talking about is not in the Gulf, it is Socotra island that is currently Yemeni, but which the UAE has invaded, near the Red Sea. The Israelis seem to want to put some intelligence gathering gear onto it.

  10. Yeah, Right says:

    Maybe I’m just too Machiavellian, but I wonder what the ulterior motive is. Because it is pretty much a given that if this is what the Iranians really are planning then they wouldn’t be openly discussing it.
    Perhaps the Iranians have learnt that Trump is mulling turning Soleimani-style strikes into a campaign i.e. he is considering a USA policy of drone-striking any IRGC general who steps outside of Iran.
    If so then this announcement makes sense: it signifies an ambit claim from the Iranians, and now they’ll sit back and see if any nibbles come their way via the Swiss (Or is that the Swedes? Can’t remember).
    If so, then they’ll offer a horse-trade: we’ll promise not to target Esper or Fat Mike (and, my, what a tempting target) if you promise not to assassinate our Generals.
    If not, well, what have the Iranians lost by making this effort?
    Nothing, as far as I can tell, and at least they’ll know that the rumours are true.

  11. Bill H says:

    If I recall, we were trying to kill Hitler so that we could win the war, while Hitler’s generals were trying to kill Hitler so that Germany could win the war. (Or at least not lose.) Somebody was confused about the effectiveness of killing leaders. Somebody still is.

  12. different clue says:

    I hadn’t heard of any realistic hope or even rumor that candidate Joemala Bidarris would have wanted to bring America back into the JCPOA if they were elected. But perhaps the IRGC wants to make very sure that if elected, they can’t, even if they would have wanted to.
    That might explain the public threatening this close to a US presidential election.
    If IRGC can do its part from Iran’s end to keep Iran and America at a state of near-war while the TrumpAdmin does its part from the US end to keep Iran and America at a state of near-war, then the IRGC will prevent any further impulse to reform inside Iran for years into the future, while keeping itself as powerful ( or even more powerful) within the Iran governing system. And the IRGC will hold in check any future impulse from future US powerholders to reduce the state of near-war.
    And maybe they really do want to kill some of these people, in order to stimulate the US retaliation which will keep the state of near-war going and going and going . . . like the Everready Energizer Bunny.

  13. Serge says:

    ISIS has conducted multiple mass-casualty attacks against the IRGC, within Iran. Not to mention the ones without. And Eric Newhill is right on the money, the Iranians are barking again. They have yet to avenge Mughniyeh, and not for lack of trying.

  14. Leith says:

    FastEddieZ –
    Regarding your ‘selling wolf tickets comment’: The Mehr News article was published one day before the 40th anniversary of the start of the Iran-Iraq War. So there is a bit of sword rattling and preaching fire and brimstone involved. And some truth in what you say.
    I agree that they want to stir things up before our election.
    Ditto on your “la vengeance se mange très bien froide” comment. They will want us to run in circles for awhile. (On the other hand won’t that nullify or cancel the effect of stirring things up before the election?)
    I do not believe they will try to pin the blame on ISIS or Al-Nusra. They will want their fingerprints on it. Deniable with no proof, but obvious to most that they were behind it.
    Re the target list, the big guys are too well protected. The poor schnooks that the IRGC can feasibly whack out are going to be US businessmen or tourists in or near the Gulf; or ambassadors & staff in podunk countries far from Iran.
    Which island are the Izzies and Emiratis militarizing? The only one I have heard of is Yemen’s Socotra. But that is more critical to the Bab el-Mandeb strait and not Hormuz. They supposedly want Israel to build a surveillance center there to eyeball Iranian shipping arms to the Houthis.

  15. Deap says:

    Could this be why the Democrats all the sudden are backing off from a SCOTUS appointment fight. They know there are other plans to get their way???
    Obama, Rice and ValJar want to protect their Iran legacy more than anything and it looks like Barr Durham just might bust it wide open, if indeed this was the reason Barry went snooping on Trump.
    Naw, too extreme. Wacko conspiracy stuff.

  16. morongobill says:

    Look for waves of suicide bombers as one of Iran’s options.
    We blew to pieces a man deeply loved by most of their society, of course there will be Hell to pay.

  17. j. casey says:

    Where is “Ayatollah Mike” in all this?

  18. Artemesia says:

    JohninMK, Is the Bridge of the Horns project still active?
    The bin Laden family was its major force, and numerous American companies represented by Madeleine Albright’s consultancy were involved in planning-engineering work, but that was over a decade ago.
    I’ve long thought that the Saudi war against Yemen involved that project.

  19. JM Gavin says:

    Did you serve in the military in Iraq and Afghanistan in the last 20 couple of decades? If memory serves you are Australian, and there were quite a few Aussies in AF and IZ. Those of us who did serve in AF and IZ tend to have a somewhat different perspective of The Golden Rule as regards the IRGC.

  20. A. Pols says:

    Whether the Iranians actually intend to do this, It seems like maybe they think it’s fun to say it just to stir things up and make people wonder? Blowing Soleimani to bits was probably a bone headed move and sorta kinda put paid to the idea that Iraq is any more than occupied territory and I’d suppose the Iranians are pissed off about it and the idea of blowing up Pompeo and his entourage must appeal, especially if they could do it while he was visiting France or some such place….

  21. walrus says:

    JM Galvin,
    Way too old for those wars. I have served, but only in the equivalent of the something like the national guard during the Vietnam era. By the time I was finally qualified to go to VN we were pulling our troops out.
    You are entitled to your thoughts about the IRGC but we are not at war with Iran just yet. Having said that, I would have probably supported similar action against North Vietnamese, Russian and Chinese leaders when I was much younger.
    Covert war by assassination is a very bad idea because two or more can play that game. Do you want your entire Government to need food tasters? Quarantine? Personal security details? How do you determine what is a genuine attack or accidental death, let alone exactly who is responsible? This stuff can get out of hand very quickly.
    It also begs the question of Solemeinis future value to us alive.
    We have had incidents of this crap before in Australia involving Turkish Ambassadors and aggrieved Armenians.Şarık_Arıyak

  22. JM gavin says:

    Sending a Hellfire through the roof of a car isn’t a covert assassination. That was intentionally overt. I do not believe that striking QS in the manner we did was the best decision…but, it wasn’t subtle.
    That written, QS and the Quds Force/IRGC killed hundreds of Coalition troops in IZ and AF, and they weren’t subtle about it, either. I had a fair amount of respect for QS, having fought him and his forces. He was a true professional. I didn’t shed any tears when he died the way he lived.
    I don’t care if the whole of the US government needs food tasters, quarantine, PSDs, whatever. That doesn’t matter to me in the least. If the politicians want war, they make war, and they can share the risks of war.

  23. Fasteddiez says:

    Good comment! All others, sorry about Socotra, I just knew the UAE/Israeli base was to be on an island. What is going on in Yemen is not a crime, it is an abomination, it is an attempt of mass extermination of a people of the poorest country in the Middle East. The US Government as usual, is going along with the Gulfies and the Izzies in accomplishing this goal. It is utterly sickening. Words cannot describe.

  24. Babak makkinejad says:

    And pray tell me what would you have the Iranians do after you declared them to be the enemies of the United States?
    Funny that you mention Afghanitan where Iran was instrumental in forging that Afgan government in whose name you have been fighting there these past 19 years.
    It is really grotseque the way you trashed the good will of Iran (and Russia) after 9/11 and picked needless fights with them.
    And for whose benefit: Israeli war criminals? The venal Arab potentate? Or the pederasts of Afghanistan? Truer friends the United States has not had since Lafayette, I suppose.

  25. Babak makkinejad says:

    Yemen war, in my opinion, can best be understood as another war of choice against the Party of Ali.
    In Afghanistan, all of the mosque, market, school bombings are against the Party of Ali; roughly, 50 Shia Muslims or more are murdered in Afghanistan everyday.
    I am waiting for the Shia-Sunni War in Pakistan.

  26. Serge says:

    Regarding Afghanistan, does your Seljuk thesis apply here? I believe the Seljuk line of control cuts through half of present day Afghanistan, as far as I am aware pederasty is practiced equally on both sides.

  27. JM Gavin says:

    You clearly saw through my poor attempts at subterfuge. You were able to see the hidden meaning behind my words. I am really just a Zionist stooge, and I exist to enable pederasts in Afghanistan…all a part of my secret plot to…to..House of Saud…something something…aw, hell, why don’t you just finish this post for me, since you have me all figured out.
    Let me know when you’re done, so I can have you tell me what I really mean about the next topic on SST.

  28. Babak makkinejad says:

    Yes it does.
    There was an Army War College study a few years back that had predicted the fracturing of Afghanistan.
    I expect Pashtuns to be forced to go their way, eventually getting absorbed in Punjabi culture.
    Everything you see in Afghanistan today had also existed also in Turkey and Iran . Those two countries cleand up their act in the process of learning from the Western Diocletian civilization.
    Afghanistan was going through the same learning process when 40 years of war eviscerated the upper classes and small middle class, leaving a mass of unvarnished destitute and desperate people with no role models and with a terrible ethos of survival: homo lupus homini.

  29. Leith says:

    JM Gavin –
    Great last sentence in your 6:40 comment. Politicians should also have to face the pain and shed some blood and sweat in wars they start, or that they escalate, or fail to stop.
    Although I do not think that “chopping-off-the head-of-the-snake” tactic does anything to help win wars. Killing Yamamoto didn’t help us in the war against Imperial Japan. It may have prolonged that war(?) And a friend once told me that “the Allies considered assassinating Hitler. But by 1943 they concluded that they were better off leaving him in place to continue to make critical geopolitical down to tactical errors.”
    I’ve always been a fan of the old Irish proverb “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.” Revenge is sweet, but the new guy could be smarter and deadlier.
    Soleimani wasn’t the military genius that the press built him up to be. And Tehran’s guy in AF that courted the Taliban and gave them arms was General Qaani, not Soleimani. Qaani now has Soleimani’s job.

  30. fanto says:

    JM Gavin,
    are you related to General Gavin, who fought Hitler´s Wehrmacht in Sicily?

  31. turcopolier says:

    I was at the luncheon at AFSC in 1972 at which LTG(Ret) Gavin announced to us student officers that he had Alzheimers and would never speak in public again. A great man, an orphan literally left at a convent door. A great soldier. Airborne! Part of my Christmas ritual here has been recounting story of the scene in which Gavin, then commanding general of the 82nd received the surrender of the German paratroop task force in the Bulge. They had declined to surrender to anyone but US or British paratroops.

  32. JM Gavin says:

    I am not related to General Gavin, though I certainly would have been proud to trace my lineage to such a warrior and great man.
    Soleimani may or may not have been the military genius the press thought him to be, but he led from the front. I’m just a soldier, but, as an adversary, QS earned my respect.
    In my opinion, the US doesn’t need to be the enemy of Iran. Many in the US government mistakenly believe that Iran’s enemies are our friends, despite ample evidence to the contrary.


    JM Gavin
    You guys need to decide what you want from the world; picking fights with all these people and countries that actually want to work with you does not make sense to me.

  34. Eric Newhill says:

    “Want to work with you”?
    Who’s picking fights?
    I recall an Islamic revolution who’s first act was to take Americans hostage and then dance in the streets calling for death to America and death to Israel. They’ve been doing it ever since + supplying shaped charges, etc. to kill US troops. That’s hardly sending a signal of wanting to work with us.
    Iran looks to me like the Black Lives Matter of the Mid East. They pretend to be on the side of “justice” but are obviously cynical self-serving ideologue power seekers that do not want to live or work within the context of a larger more diverse community and who will not compromise like everyone else in the civilized world must do – and who use threats, terrorism and other passive aggressive tactics to try to achieve objectives that they will never achieve and aren’t worthy of. Basically, angry losers banging their heads against a wall and turning off would be friends/supporters along the way. The more their collective head hurts, the more they bang away.

  35. JM Gavin says:

    The US is not a monolithic entity. Lots of cooks in the kitchen, often trying to bake different dishes in the same pan.
    The US holds legitimate elections regularly, and the winners get to set policy, and often that policy is a departure from the previous office holder.
    The US is an unsteady ally. That’s just the way things are. Just think of us as a grumpy brown bear that can’t decide what to eat for lunch. If smaller animals that could be lunch decide the poke the bear with a stick, the bear may eat lunch right then and there. Or it may not. As much fun as it is to poke the bear, it’s less fun to get the undivided attention of a hungry bear. A lot of small animals have poked the bear, and the bear lost interest in the animal. Don’t conflate the bear’s short attention span with defeating the bear. Saddam Hussein did that in 1990, and Saddam went from having the fourth largest army in the world to having the second-largest army in Iraq very quickly.
    Politicians are motivated by power, and they need money to get power or keep it. While it takes a lot of money to buy a politician, a lot of folks have enough to rent one as needed. The money is not supposed to flow from foreign sources, but motivated buyers find ways around that.
    All this to write that you seem to have high expectations for a superpower with functioning representative democracy. The US government is always going to act in a manner that seems fickle and uncertain. That’s also just the way things are, and neither you nor I have much personal input into the process.


    JM Gavin
    Guatemala, Iran, Vietnam, Chile did not poke you.
    You had to go out of your way to poke them.
    When Saddam Hussein attacked USS Stark, you guys attacked Iran.
    When Israel attacked USS Liberty, you sucked it up.
    When day were celebrating attacks 9/11/2001 attacks on US in UAE, you ignored them.
    Right now, you are poling the Bear in her nest near the Black Sea.
    Are you people mad?
    You cannot be serious with that analogy.

  37. turcopolier says:

    I was a senior member of the USS Stark JCS investigation. There was no retaliation against Iran for that.

  38. JM Gavin says:

    I don’t think you are reading what I have been writing, starting with the fact that there is no “YOU PEOPLE.”
    COL Lang,
    I believe Babak is referring to the Iranian Airbus downing by the USS Vincennes as the US revenge for the strike on the USS Stark the year before. I doubt Babak believes that a country would ever mistakenly shoot down a passenger jet…

  39. turcopolier says:

    Jm Gavin
    Well, then he is a 3rd world fool. USS Vincennes shot down the plane because the CO was terrified that he would suffer the same fate as the CO of USS Stark.

  40. Babak makkinejad says:

    These wars, needless confrontations and so on, are policies of the freely elected, duly & legally seated of the American people.
    In a representative republic, where does legal or moral responsibility for policies reside?
    Over as many decades?

  41. Babak makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang
    My memory of that time is Iraq attacked USS Stark, Reagan gave a speech and blamed Iran for it, and US attacked an oil platform that Revolutionary Guards were using.
    My Japanese friend was amused by US reaction as being nonsensical.
    But, then again, George Bush used UAE, where coeds were giggling about 9/11 attacks on US when going to classes, to deliver another stern warning to Iran.

  42. turcopolier says:

    I remember the combat on the two little islands at the head of the Gulf. The larger one was Failaka I think. Iraqi Marines vs IRGC. Some sort of oil installations on the islands. I remember that we struck one or both but do not remember that it had anything to do with the accidental Iraqi attack on USS Stark. We knew they were responsible for that. They admitted it, apologized and paid the US a hefty penalty for the deed and the injuries and deaths. We would not have attacked you for that. As I recall we just did not want you to hold those islands. I was at Um Qasr at the time and remember Iraqi Navy gunboats bringing back dead and wounded from this fighting.

  43. JM Gavin says:

    The nature of the US government (as described above) doesn’t exempt US citizens from responsibility or culpability.
    The people of a democratic nation are morally responsible for the government’s actions or failure to act.
    Every people has the government they deserve.
    At a certain point, “who started it” ceases to matter. Such is the case with the US and Iran. Speaking strictly for myself, I find that Iran is a rational actor, motivated by Iranian best interests. I believe that Iranian best interests and the United States’ best interests are often compatible. The fact that Iranian interests conflict with the Arab states or Israel should not be the impetus for US animus (or action) against Iran.


    Which brings me to my central thesis; a religious war, which, by nature, is not amenable to rational resolution or discourse until the situation on the ground changes.
    Right now, Arab oil-producers are weakened due to reduction in oil demand; the United States is hurting politically and economically, Russia, Iran, EU states, Turkey are in various stages of economic and covid-19 malaise, Israel is shut-down, Lebanon is broke and so on and so forth – except the People’s Republic of China.
    Right now, Peace is Cheap and War is Expensive since everyone has an incentive to avoid further weakening of their position. As the Actor with the Strategic Preponderance, the United States could initiate a Peace Initiative – there would be many takers.
    Not that I expect that.

  45. Eric Newhill says:

    JM Gavin,
    US support of Israel is not going away. It’s just a fact of life (whether or not Babak/Iran accept it). There are political and personal financial reasons. There are religious reasons. There are social justice reasons. There are cultural reasons. If the Sunni states will accept that fact and work within the parameters that fact establishes, then the US will also side with the Sunni states.
    Personally, I am ambivalent on the question of Israel, yet I do accept it’s there to stay and with US support. That said, I have no delusions about the goodness of Iran (or the “party of Ali”). They have their own interests and ambitions, some of which are contrary to to those of Israel and the Sunni states. Ergo, they are contrary to the interests of the US.
    How hard would it be for Iran to simply recognize Israel as a sovereign nation and its right to exist? How far would that go towards diminishing tensions between the US and Iran? Babak says it can’t be done because of “social justice”. I call BS on that. Destroying a nation (Israel) in the name of the Palestinians is not increasing social justice in the world. Social justice cannot be a 0 sum game. Babak also says it is a matter of honor. Sometimes I think there is a fine line separating honor from stupidity and belligerence. Round and round we go and Iran just keeps losing and digging its hole deeper.

  46. JM Gavin says:

    Eric Newhill-
    While support for Israel runs deep in US politics, many of the left are openly anti-Israel. In a time where the survival of the US as-we-know-it is a constant discussion, future US support for Israel isn’t guaranteed.
    The Israeli’s don’t help themselves by assuming that the US owes them whatever they want or ask (which is the Israeli government view, in my personal experience).
    The Iranians seem to view themselves as a Shia Persian people surrounded by Arab Sunni interests. The Israelis are increasingly and openly establishing ties with Sunni Arab governments (Israel has long had more hidden ties to some Sunni Arab governments). How hard would it be for the Iranians to acknowledge Israel’s right to exist? I don’t know, I’m not Iranian, and I really can’t see the world from their perspective. As long as the current folks running Iran are in power, I don’t see it happening.
    I’m just a soldier and bag man for the nation of my birth, and my views are shaped by my own history.

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