Iran is repeatedly threatening the United States after Iranian General Qasem Soleimani was taken out with a drone strike outside of a Baghdad airport last week.
Brig. Gen. Esmail Ghaani, who has taken over the Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps following Soleimani’s death, vowed retaliation against U.S. forces over the strike.
“Everyone should be patient a little to see the bodies of American soldiers all over the Middle East,” Ghaani said, according to Al Jazeera.
Ghaani had previously served as the deputy commander of the Quds Force since 1997, working at the side of Soleimani. This follows a similar threat from Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who also promised revenge following the killing of Soleimani.
“Soleimani’s martyr’s death will make Iran more determined in its opposition to US imperialism, and in the protection of Islamic values,” Rouhani said.
“Without a doubt, Iran and other peace-loving countries in the area will take revenge,” he added.
In an even bolder threat, Iranian state TV has reportedly put a bounty of $80 million on the head of President Trump.
“Iran has 80 million inhabitants. Based on the Iranian population, we want to raise $80million (£61million) which is a reward for those who get close to the head of President Trump,” an official state broadcaster said, according to en24.
Iranian MP Abolfazl Aboutorabi is also issuing threats against the U.S. people, vowing that retaliation will happen on American shores. He claims that not even the White House is off limits.
“We can attack the White House itself, we can respond to them on the American soil,” Aboutorabi said, according to the Iranian Labour News Agency.
“We have the power, and God willing we will respond in an appropriate time,” he added.
Aboutorabi believes that the Trump strike was a declaration of war, and that there is no time for negotiation of de-escalation in the aftermath.
“When someone declares war, do you want to respond to the bullets with flowers? They will shoot you in the head,” he said.
President Trump has made it clear that he will not back down regardless of anything the Iranians say or do. He has already prepared the next phase of strikes against the Islamic Republic, which he reserves the right to do when he sees fit.
….hundreds of Iranian protesters. He was already attacking our Embassy, and preparing for additional hits in other locations. Iran has been nothing but problems for many years. Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have…..
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 4, 2020
A war with Iran is now looking like a real possibility, even though President Trump has repeatedly vowed to bring the troops home from the Middle East.
Locked and Loaded: Pentagon Grants Soldiers in DC Power to use Lethal Force
The National Guard have been authorized to use lethal force, if needed.
Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy has authorized the twenty thousand National Guard members providing security around the U.S. Capitol to carry lethal weapons as Washington, D.C., braces for Inauguration Day.
“On January 12, 2021, National Guardsmen were given authorization to be armed in support of the U.S. Capitol Police to protect the U.S. Capitol and individual members of Congress and their staff,” according to a statement from the D.C. National Guard, which is commanding Guard forces in the city, including units deployed from six other states, to provide security for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration next week,” the DC National Guard revealed in a statement “This was requested by federal authorities and authorized by the Secretary of the Army.”
The National Guard Bureau declined to specify what weapons troops would carry.
“National Guard members are postured to meet the requirements of the supported civil authorities, up to and including protective equipment and being armed if necessary,” said the statement. “The public’s safety is our top priority.”
Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau, told media members on Monday that a force of up to 15,000 will deploy to D.C. with all their issued equipment, including their individual weapons. So if the need arises, “they are close by and they are readily accessible.”
The Pentagon initially authorized up to six thousand two hundred Guard members from Maryland, Virginia, New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania to deploy to D.C. on federal status to maintain security through Inauguration Day.
The history of National Guard members being a part of the presidential inauguration dates back to the first inauguration of President George Washington in 1789.
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