Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has issued a warning to the United States establishment. In a statement, he said that the “criminals” responsible for the death of a top Iranian general will face “severe revenge.”
The Ayatollah’s statement was published in English by an unverified but widely-cited Twitter account, and though Zero Hedge hasn’t personally verified whether the statement is genuine, it is being reported as legitimate by many media outlets around the world, including the Washington Post, which cited part of it. –ZeroHedge
The Ayatollah also said that his work fighting on behalf of the Iranian people “won’t be stopped by his martyrdom,” according to a statement published on Twitter. For those unaware, Iran’s most revered and respected military commander, General Qasem Suleimani, the leader of the IRGC’s Quds Force, was killed by the United States Military-industrial complex in an attack late Thursday.
Suleimani was a powerful regional player responsible for overseeing Iran’s proxy war in Yemen, as well as Iran-backed forces in Iraq, Lebanon and elsewhere, according to a report by ZeroHedge. And his death will not likely go unpunished if the ruling class in Iran can be believed.
The statement reads as follows:
Dear Iranian Nation!
Years of sincere, brave efforts fighting against the devils& villainous in the world & yrs of wishing for martyrdom on the path of God finally took the dear Commander of Islam, Soleimani, to this lofty status. His blood was shed by the most barbaric of men.
We congratulate Imam Mahdi (‘a.j.) & Soleimani’s pure soul& condole the Iranian nation on this great martyrdom. He was an eminent example of a person trained in Islam. He spent all his life in struggling for God. Martyrdom was the reward for his tireless efforts over the years.
His efforts & path won’t be stopped by his martyrdom, by God’s Power, rather a #SevereRevenge awaits the criminals who have stained their hands with his & the other martyrs’ blood last night. Martyr Soleimani is an Intl figure of Resistance & all such people will seek revenge.
All friends – & enemies – know that Jihad of Resistance will continue with more motivation & definite victory awaits the fighters on this blessed path. The loss of our dear General is bitter. The continuing fight & ultimate victory will be more bitter for the murderers & criminals.
The Iranian nation will honor the memory of the noble Major-General Soleimani & the martyrs with him – particularly the great Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis – & I declare 3 days of mourning across the nation. I condole & congratulate his family.
In another tweet published shortly after the news broke of the deadly U.S. attack, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif warned that “the US bears responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism.” He also denounced the strike as an “act of international terrorism” by the U.S., and added that the Quds force is “THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al.”
The US' act of international terrorism, targeting & assassinating General Soleimani—THE most effective force fighting Daesh (ISIS), Al Nusrah, Al Qaeda et al—is extremely dangerous & a foolish escalation.
The US bears responsibility for all consequences of its rogue adventurism.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) January 3, 2020
Meanwhile, Iranian defense minister Amir Hatami said that the attack by the “arrogant U.S.” would be met with a “crushing” response, according to the Washington Post. And President Donald Trump cited the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, (which was recently the target of a Benghazi-style attack earlier this week) as justification for Suleimani’s killing. All American citizens have been warned to leave Iraq immediately.
During these militarily tense times, it can be important to reflect on the fact that the U.S. government aka., the ruling class, and Suleimani weren’t always enemies, as Barbara Slavin, the director of the Future of Iran Initiative points out.
This could be the justification for a third world war that governments have been looking for. But, to be fair, the general’s killing wasn’t the first example of President Trump ordering a supposedly “game-changing” military strike that could instigate WWIII. Back in 2017, “experts” delivered a similar warning after Trump sent 50+ Tomahawk Missiles raining down on Syrian military fixtures.